Drakensberg Cable Car Community Engagement
The Department in its efforts to ensure the development of catalytic projects geared towards the implementation of the KwaZulu Natal Tourism Master Plan and the growth of tourism within the province of KwaZulu Natal; undertook the process of conducting a feasibility study and developing a business plan for the Drakensberg Cable Car.
The Drakensberg Cable Car is a catalytic project with a huge potential of unlocking the tourism potential of UKhahlamba – Drakensberg region, enhance the competitiveness and further position KwaZulu-Natal as a must see tourism destination.
In ensuring that the project is a success and that local community within and around the proposed project benefit, a series of engagements were undertaken:
Traditional Council and Mayors
A meeting between the MEC, Traditional Council and Mayors from UThukela District Municipalities was convened, to introduce the project and also look at possible linkages the project might have with the adjacent areas.
Four meetings have been convened with the Local Traditional Council to further unpack the project also ensuring that the council is not left out in any of the developments pertaining to the project. These meetings also cement the support and working relations between the council and the Department.
A meeting has been held with Ingonyama Trust as an agency dealing with land falling within the Traditional Council in KwaZulu Natal.
A district wide community consultation was undertaken and attended by more than 20 000 community members. The consultation was held to engage with the community regarding the project, there was great participation, members indicating what the project of this magnitude would do to uplift their livelihoods and also the local economy.
Engagement with Business
Two major business consultations were held with the business fraternity so obtain the views of the business sector in the area. A lot of businesses welcomed the project as it was felt it will not only boost the economy of the area but also increase tourist numbers thus opening up to a new range of tourists who might have been able to visit the Drakensberg.
A media briefing was held to provide the media an opportunity to engage on the project as this is a big project which had attracted a huge media interest.
More consultations are still to be undertaken during the Environmental Impact Assessment phase.