CapeNature to create 'advisory committee' in response to Jonkershoek outcry
The local conservation body says it's establishing a Protected Area Advisory Committee in March as a platform to engage with the public.
CapeNature came under fire for a sudden decision to ban vehicle access to the popular reserve in Stellenbosch from December last year.
It's understood that the decision was made due concerns about vehicle-related incidents and the obstruction of the road during fire season.
More than 5,000 people signed a petition that was created last year, calling to halt the ban on vehicles.
Although the ban was subsequently lifted, locals say that there is still no clarity about the number of vehicles allowed to access the reserve each day.
Local hike master Steve Chadwick says it seems that access has been restricted to 20 vehicles per day.
However, Bolander Lifestyle reporter Norman McFarlane says he was told by CapeNature representatives that there was no vehicle limit at all.
Chadwick says CapeNature may be forced to make additional parking available for hikers who see Jonkershoek as a national treasure.
CapeNature has been accused of failing to facilitate constructive engagements after a public participation process regarding access to the hiking trail failed to materialise.
The organisation's Petro van Rhyn says she is collating a stakeholder database using the contact details of everyone who has written to CapeNature.
Stakeholder engagement for us is critical. We are looking at engaging people that are interested in this.Petro van Rhyn, General Manager for Advocacy - CapeNature
Unfortunately, [the public participation process] was something that was put forward as a suggestion from MTO and it didn't happen. I think maybe, because of the high number of incidents, the urgency of the matter might have given way.Petro van Rhyn, General Manager for Advocacy - CapeNature
The stakeholders will be informed about the developments regarding the Protected Area Advisory Committee and how to get involved.
Van Rhyn says the advisory committee will provide a platform to discuss the management plan for the hiking trail.
She explains that CapeNature and MTO Group share joint responsibility for the reserve.
CapeNature is the custodian of the hiking trail, while MTO is responsible for the gate access and road maintenance.
If you would like to be added to CapeNature's stakeholder database, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Listen to the discussion on Today with Pippa Hudson:
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) explains that the warrant will only be executed should Malema fail to appear on May 8.Read More
Eskom's chief operating officer says the utility's maintenance programme will be in full effect in the next two months.Read More
The Correctional Services Department says parole is only granted if the board is satisfied that the risk of re-offending is low.Read More
Malema failed to appear in court on Monday morning on a charge of firing a gun in public.Read More
"There are stunning voices coming out of South Africa". The celebrated soprano talks to Africa Melane ahead of her upcoming visit.Read More
As the fresh inquest enters its final week of testimony, Moray Hathorn (Aggett family attorney) discusses what lies ahead.Read More
Load shedding has been suspended for Sunday, but the system remains 'unpredictable'.Read More
Former president Jacob Zuma arrived at OR Tambo International where supporters waited to give him a hero's welcome.Read More
The SAHRC's Chris Nissen has been in close contact with the van Wyk family and says parole regulations must be reviewed.Read More
The music icon and Ladysmith Black Mambazo founder is being laid to rest in his home town in KwaZulu-Natal.Read More