Following the withdrawal of the status and the intention to reverse the proclamation of the Groenkloof National Park in Tshwane as a National Park, the DA submitted Parliamentary questions to the Minister of Fisheries, Forestry and Environmental Affairs, Barbara Creecy, to ascertain what the purpose of this withdrawal was.
This after residents and interested parties expressed the concern that the actual intention was to develop and rezone the Groenkloof Nature Reserve, a historical park in the Fountains Valley Precinct which is also part of the original Groenkloof Farm, into residential areas and other commercial properties.
The DA can confirm that in her reply to these questions, Minister Creecy emphatically confirmed that no such plans were in place and that the Groenkloof Nature Reserve will not be used for rezoning or development for residential areas. The focus will be exclusively on Portion 90, which is the 6,8 hectares, on the ridge between Muckleneuk and Groenkloof, opposite the Telkom Tower, and it is solely for the use of Sanparks alone. The public is generally not given access to this area, as it is the headquarters of Sanparks.
The DA understands that the Groenkloof National Park does not fulfil the requirements to be a National Park, and accepts the explanation from the Minister.
The original Groenkloof National Park was proclaimed the first game sanctuary in Africa in 1895 and is still recognised as an incredible heritage site and a popular attraction for all South Africans. It is possibly the second-largest urban nature and game reserve after Table Mountain. The three major nature reserves in the precinct are Groenkloof Nature/Game Reserve, Klapperkop Nature/Game Reserve and the Voortrekker Monument Reserve.
All of these are still open to the public.