Visit SA national parks for free

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Pretoria - South Africans are in for a treat this month. As part of Heritage Month, South African National Parks (SANParks) is  offering free visits to all national parks from 8-12 September.

The announcement was made by Minister in the Presidency responsible for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Jeff Radebe, during a post-Cabinet briefing on Thursday.

“Cabinet encourages South Africans to celebrate our rich natural and cultural heritage, diverse beliefs and traditions as a people united in pursuit of a shared identity,” Minister Radebe said.

Heritage Month is celebrated from 1-30 September under the theme, “Celebrating 20 years of democracy: Tell your Story that Moves South Africa Forward”.

This year’s Heritage Month takes place against the backdrop of the country’s 20 years of freedom celebrations, which also reinforces South Africa’s collective memory of the struggle towards promoting a national identity.

Minister Radebe said Cabinet further encouraged South Africans, especially the youth, to embrace the country’s common heritage and use their diverse cultural heritage to foster nation building, inclusive citizenship and social cohesion.

He said Cabinet also supports the call by Parliament for all South Africans to protect the national heritage, particularly the poaching of the rhinos and all animals.

Advocate Pansy Tlakula

Meanwhile, Cabinet has also wished Adv Pansy Tlakula well and further expressed its gratitude to the contribution she made to the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC). Cabinet also extended its thanks to her for her selfless contribution to democracy in the country. Tlakula resigned as the IEC chairperson on Tuesday.

Tlakula made headlines ahead of the elections after Public Protector Thuli Madonsela found her “guilty of gross maladministration” for the lease agreement of the IEC’s headquarters in Centurion.

This prompted five political parties -- the UDM, African Christian Democratic Party, Congress of the People, Agang SA and Economic Freedom Fighters -- to approach the court to get Tlakula removed for allegedly failing to follow due processes in the procurement of the IEC’s premises.

Minister Radebe further said her resignation comes against the backdrop of a successful 2014 General Election which she managed. “She contributed immensely to ensure our democracy remains strong,” he said. -