Pretoria, 25 June 2019. The Voortrekker Monument which took over the Blood River Heritage Site between Dundee and Vryheid in northern KwaZulu Natal in 2001, has announced that a new management arrangement came into effect on the site from 1 May 2019.

This step had to be taken as the site, which has been running at a loss since 2016 showed an alarming decrease in income in the second half of 2018. The Monument launched an investigation into the possibility of serious financial mismanagement on the site. The internal investigation confirmed suspicions and two fulltime employees’ contracts were terminated. The matter is currently being investigated by the SAPS.

The risk of only one management couple on site, who were periodically relieved, was clear and the Board of Directors of the Voortrekker Monument approved the appointment of four permanent employees, under the leadership of a Financial Manager. Several other precautionary measures to ensure better corporate governance were also implemented.

Mr and Mrs Anton and Judean van Vuuren were appointed respectively as Financial Manager and Hospitality Officer, while the young Grobler couple were appointed in general management and logistical capacities. Great effort has already been made to train the employees and to instil the importance of excellent client relations.

The Voortrekker Monument is a non-profit company which manages the Blood River Site without any State or other subsidies. The site is 100% dependent on the income generated by the tourism industry. As it remains a challenge to manage any business endeavour over such a long distance, we can only hope that the losses which had been incurred will be reversed within a year and that relations with the heritage and tourism sectors that had been negatively affected, will be reinstated.

For more information please contact Cecilia Kruger at 012 326 6770 or bd@vtm.org.za.

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