Department of Environmental Affairs congratulates Fundisile Mketeni on his appointment as SANparks CEO
23 October 2014
The Department of Environmental Affairs has congratulated Fundisile Mketeni on his appointment as Chief Executive Officer of South African National Parks (SANParks). Cabinet approved the appointment of Mr Mketeni as the CEO of SANParks on a five year contract at its meeting on 22 October 2014.
Mr Mketeni has extensive experience in conservation management having been a conservation career professional. He has spearheaded the country's biodiversity agenda for the last 10 years as the Deputy Director General responsible for Biodiversity and Conservation in the Department of Environmental Affairs.
“The Department would like to thank Mr Mketeni for his excellent service and dedication to the conservation of our rich biological diversity,” said the Department. “We are looking forward to working with Mr Mketeni as he moves SANParks into the future. In the face of the ongoing challenges of rhino poaching, we have faith in Mr Mketeni’s abilities to address the scourge head-on.”
“I welcome the confidence placed on me by the SANParks Board, the Minister and the country as a whole,” said Mr Mketeni. “I am looking forward to serving the country and committed to continuing with the good work and also to positioning the organisation as a lead agent in conservation nationally, regionally and globally.”
Fundisile Mketeni holds a Masters Degree in Environmental Management and has 25 years’ experience in the field of Environmental Management and Biodiversity and Conservation.
He brings with him a wealth of experience in the development and management of protected areas, tourism development and management, conservation of biodiversity and public sector management.
He started his career as a Trainee Manager and Manager for some of the Eastern Cape Reserves, later moving to SANParks as the Park Manager of the Addo Elephant National Park. He worked in Addo at a time when major tourism developments, concessions and community beneficiation initiatives were being undertaken.
Mr Mketeni’s career at SANParks saw him serve as the Chief Operating Officer for the 19 National Parks except the Kruger National Parks, and acted as Executive Director: Parks before taking up the position of DDG: Biodiversity and Conservation in the Department of Environmental Affairs in 2004.
Mr Mketeni has extensive experience in conservation management having been a conservation career professional. He has spearheaded the country's biodiversity agenda for the last 10 years as the Deputy Director General responsible for Biodiversity and Conservation.
He has spent the last 10 years with the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) as the Deputy Director General (DDG): Biodiversity and Conservation. It is in this role that Mr Mketeni honed his skills on Policy and Legislation Development, Intergovernmental Coordination and Relations and International Negotiations and Relations. He served as a Board member of South African National Parks and Isimangaliso Wetland Park Authority and is currently serving as a Board member of South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI).
He has played an instrumental role in the development and implementation of South Africa’s rhino anti-poaching legislation and policies as he headed the development of the Rhino Safety and Security Strategy and the Rhino Issue Management Process. He lead the South African negotiating teams to the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) between 2004 and 2012. Mr Mketeni also played a leading role in the development and implementation of the country’s Elephant Management Policy.
He also lead negotiations on other Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) for South Africa such as the Convention on Biological Diversity(CBD), the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the UNESCO World Heritage Convention.
Besides working to expand and consolidate the network of national protected areas, ensuring that communities benefit from biodiversity and protected areas and playing a leading role in the People and Parks programme and the efficacy of World Heritage Sites in South Africa, he has pursued the reintegration of ecosystems across borders through the development of Transfrontier Conservation Areas within Southern Africa, and across Africa. In this regard, he has led the development of a myriad of regulatory tools, co-operation agreements, plans and programmes to strengthen biodiversity conservation in the country and regional integration.
He is presently the chair of the South African National Committee of the International Conservation Union (IUCN), the current chairperson of the African Group under the UNCCD and the Bureau Member for Africa of the Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) established in 2012 as an independent intergovernmental body committed to the credible assessment of the state of the planet's biodiversity, its ecosystems and the essential services these systems provide to society.
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