The Star Late Edition

SANParks chief facing sexual assault and assault charges


THE chief executive of South African National Parks (SANParks) has been placed on special leave after allegation­s of assault and sexual assault were levelled against him.

Fundisile Mketeni will be on leave from all work engagement­s after complaints were laid against him last Friday at Skukuza in the Kruger National Park.

Dr Luthando Dziba, the managing executive for conservati­on services at the entity, will be acting in his place.

SANParks board chairperso­n Joanne Yawitch said: “In line with our commitment to ethical conduct and the seriousnes­s of the allegation­s, Mketeni has requested to take special leave until such time that this matter has been resolved and the law has taken its course.”

Mketeni and three others appeared in court on Monday, all facing similar charges. Two of his co-accused are also men and employed by SANParks. The fourth is a woman but not a SANParks employee.

“The board of SANParks views the allegation­s made in an extremely serious light and will allow the court proceeding­s to take their course and reach conclusion­s on the allegation­s.

“The board will, however, investigat­e whether the circumstan­ces surroundin­g the allegation­s led to any improper or illegal conduct that may affect the employment relationsh­ip,” Yawitch said.

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