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Kruger signs MoU toward empowering communities

16 February 2005

The Kruger National Park's Executive Director Dr Bandile Mkhize signed a Memorandum of Understanding on behalf of the KNP with representatives from the Community Public Private Partnership Programme (CPPPP) and the Tourism Enterprise Programme (TEP) on Wednesday, 16 February 16 2005.

This Memorandum of Understanding between the CPPPP (a Department of Trade and Industry project), KNP and TEP (a partner of the Business Trust) aims to encourage economic growth in the area around the park, particularly in the agriculture and tourism sectors. It also defines the roles of each of the three organizations in meeting this objective.

"It must be recognised that the KNP is not a development organisation but rather facilitates local economic development without taking sole responsibility for promoting it," Dr Mkhize said.

The Kruger National Park runs a number of empowerment programmes that are aimed at increasing general economic development of members of the local communities living outside the boundaries of the park.

These initiatives include a curio selling project, a contractor development programme and various other ad hoc opportunities for entrepreneurs from the communities surrounding the park.

"I believe that this beautifully simple agreement casts in stone the important task of the three organisations in the vitally important objective of reaching the goal of empowering the members of our local communities. This is surely an admirable aim," Dr Mkhize commentedThere are six community forums around the outskirts of the KNP. Each forum represents a community with the aim of addressing points of concern between that community and the KNP."

Kruger National ParkRaymond Travers

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