Author: Herman Pieters

13 January 2023 Media Release: GRDM CFO spreads his wings to join an International Software Investment company

Media Release: GRDM CFO spreads his wings to join an International Software Investment Company

For Immediate Release
13 January 2023

Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Jan-Willem de Jager, has accepted a new role at a fast-growing, international software investment company. Jan-Willem joined GRDM as Chief Audit Executive in 2015 and was appointed as CFO in March 2019.

Speaking about the move, he said, “I was presented with a unique opportunity to join a fast-growing international software investment company. It provides great scope for professional growth in areas such as exposure to the latest system developments and international trends in global markets, finance and investments.”

The new role will be within the finance function and will involve analyzing financial processes to enhance operational efficiencies while ensuring accurate and timely reporting to stakeholders. Jan-Willem will bring a wealth of experience to the role, having gained experience in a diverse range of business processes within local government, particularly in the implementation of the national Municipal Standard Chart of Accounts (mSCOA) reform, as well as experience in systems and processes from former employers.

This role will build on Jan-Willem’s career which, prior to joining GRDM in 2015, includes time with PricewaterhouseCoopers in SA and Europe, Moore George, KPMG Dublin, and other companies in London, including the investment bank Goldman Sachs.

De Jager stated, “I would like to thank GRDM for the opportunity to serve as CFO of such a progressive and ambitious institution. The highlights of my tenure include the clean audit outcomes for 2021/22 and 2020/21, and equally rewarding to assist colleagues, departments, and fellow government institutions to achieve their goals in serving their communities.”

During his feedback to the Mayoral Committee, Executive Mayor, Ald. Memory Booysen said: “It is not nice to say goodbye to Jan-Willem. It makes sense to get involved at an institution that operates on an international level, given the state of South Africa. The same would have been done by me if I were you.”

“It is also a feather in the cap of the Garden Route because the Americans recognised the talent we have.”

“I am grateful for your role in various turn-around strategies over the past few years, in which you played a pivotal role. You’ve done a great job crossing the ts and dotting the i’s.”

His last working day at the GRDM is on 27 January 2023. Thembani Loliwe, GRDM Strategic Manager, has been appointed to act for three months as the CFO, while the process to appoint a new one is underway.

GRDM wishes Jan-Willem de Jager all the best in the future.


Special Council Meeting at 10h00 on 13 January 2023


Notice is hereby given that a SPECIAL COUNCIL MEETING of the Garden Route District Municipality will be held at the CA Robertson Council Chambers,
54 York Street, George and via the municipality’s Youtube Channel here:



17 December 2022 Media Release: Food safety during load shedding

Media Release: Food safety during load shedding

For Immediate Release
17 December 2022

Load shedding occurs often in South Africa. Other countries in the northern parts of Africa and the Middle East, also experience power outages on an average of 23.5 times a month which lasts on average 9.4 hours at a time. South-East Asia is hit with an average of 17 power outages a month, lasting over an hour each time.

These outages have a direct impact on food safety. Three (3) factors are at play here – the length of the outage, its frequency of it and where food is stored.

One key fact to remember is: As long as it is cold, food should be safe.

Food in a refrigerator may be safe as long as:

  • Power outages do not last longer than four hours
  • the fridge door is closed
  • the temperature of the refrigerator was at 4 °C when load shedding started.

Food safety issues including spoiling are especially likely to occur with perishable goods such as fresh meat, poultry, fish, soft cheeses, milk, and leftover food (depending on how long they were stored before load shedding started). The recommended temperature for the fridge to operate at, for food to remain safe to consume, is 4°C. It is therefore a better option to discard perishable food stored in a fridge that operates at a temperature higher than 4°C, especially when load shedding took place for two (2) or more hours.

Different bacteria grow at various temperatures. For every 1°C increase above that minimum growth temperature, the bacteria growth rate will double (depending on the type, living environment and access to nutrients).  It is therefore essential to keep the door closed to ensure that the refrigerator stays as cold as possible during a power outage

If a freezer door is kept closed, frozen food will stay frozen for up to 48 hours. Perishable food must be cooked as soon as possible if they begin to defrost. Refreezing perishable food is dangerous.

Given the price of food, one is hesitant to discard it, but weighed against the risks of consuming unsafe food – it is best to discard it. Some perishables might not necessarily smell or taste much different but may be filled with bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses.

If one knows the load-shedding schedule, one can prepare for it as follows:

  • Ensure that the temperature in the refrigerator is 4 °C or as near to it as possible.
  • Frozen leftovers, milk, fresh meat and poultry, fish, and other goods should be moved from the fridge to the freezer that you might not need right away.
  • Buy fresh food in smaller quantities, prepare it fast, and enjoy it instead of buying it in bulk and storing it in the fridge.
  • Take special note of purchasing long-lasting items, such as unopened canned foods and sterile or ultra-heat heated temperature drinks. These have a lengthy shelf-life outside of the fridge, however, once they’re opened, they too need to be chilled.
  • Another method used to keep perishable goods as cold as possible for as long as possible is to place ice packs around the items in the fridge.

Voedselveiligheid tydens beurtkrag

Beurtkrag kom dikwels in Suid-Afrika voor. Die lengte en frekwensie van beurtkrag kan ‘n impak hê op die veiligheid van voedsel wat in ‘n yskas gestoor is. Belangrike riglyne en inligting word verskaf:

Solank dit koud is, sal voedsel veilig wees.

  1. Voedsel in ‘n yskas behoort veilig te wees solank daar nie meer as vier-uur se kragonderbrekings is nie.
  2. Die yskasdeur geslote bly.
  3. Die temperatuur van die yskas 4 °C was aan die begin van beurtkrag.

Voedselveiligheidskwessies, insluitend bederf, sal veral met bederfbare goedere voorkom. Voorbeelde is:

  • Vars vleis
  • Vars pluimvee (witvleis)
  • Vars vis
  • Melk
  • Sagte kase
  • Moontlik selfs oorskiet, afhangend van hoe lank dit in die yskas was voor beurtkrag.

Die aanbevole temperatuur vir yskaste is 4 °C, hoewel ons in Suid-Afrika weet dat die meeste verbruikersyskaste teen hoeër temperature werk. Dit is dan die beste om voedsel in die bogenoemde lys weg te gooi as die onderbreking langer as twee-uur is EN waar die yskastemperatuur hoeër as 4 °C is.

Wenk: Plaas ‘n termometer in die yskas, dit is die enigste manier om yskas temperature te monitor.

Verskeie soorte fungi en bakterieë begin groei by verskillende minimum temperature, maar tydens elke 1°C toename bo die minimum groei temperatuur, groei bakterieë in voedsel (verdubbel) vinniger. Dit is dus noodsaaklik om yskasdeure toe te hou om te verseker dat die temperatuur so laag as moontlik bly tydens beurtkrag.

As u vrieskasdeur toe gehou word, sal bevrore kos vir ongeveer 48-uur gevries bly. Bederfbare kos moet so gou as moontlik gaargemaak word as dit om enige rede begin ontdooi, aangesien dit NIE hervries MOET word nie.

Gegewe die prys van kos, is ‘n mens huiwerig om dit uit te gooi, tog kan u nie ongesonde kos proe of ruik nie. Onveilige kos ruik en proe soms nogsteeds redelik, maar wanneer ‘n maaltyd vreemd ruik, dui dit daarop dat voedsel bederf het

Indien u die beurtkragskedule ken, kan u soos volg daarvoor voorberei:

  • Maak seker dat die temperatuur in die yskas 4 °C is of so naby as moontlik daaraan.
  • Bevrore/gevriesde oorskietkos, melk, vars vleis en pluimvee (witvleis), vis en ander kossoorte kan van die yskas na die vrieskas geskuif word.
  • Koop vars kos in kleiner hoeveelhede, berei dit vinnig voor en geniet dit in plaas daarvan om dit in grootmaat te koop en dit vir ‘n lang tyd in die yskas te stoor. Stoor voedsel in ‘n vrieskas i.p.v. ‘n yskas.
  • Die raklewe van blikkieskos en steriele of UHT-drankies is langer, maar sodra enige van dié items oopgemaak word moet dit verkoel word.
  • Om bederfbare items so lank moontlik, so koud moontlik te hou, kan u ook bevrore/gevriesde yspakkies rondom dit in die yskas plaas.

Ukhuseleko lokutya ngexesha lokucinyawa kombane

Ucimicimi wombane(loadsheding) wenzeka rhoqo eMzantsi Afrika. Amanye amazwe akumantla eAfrika nakuMbindi Mpuma, nawo afumana ukucinywa kombane ngomyinge wamaxesha angama-23.5 ngenyanga nto leyo ethatha umyinge weeyure eziyi-9.4 ngexesha. UMzantsi-mpuma we-Asia ubethwe ngomndilili wokucinywa kombane ka-17 ngenyanga, okuhlala ngaphezulu kweyure ngexesha ngalinye.

Oku kucima kunempembelelo ngqo kukhuseleko lokutya. Zintathu (3) izinto ezidlalwayo apha – ubude bokucima, ukuphindaphindeka kwayo nalapho kugcinwa khona ukutya.

Esinye isibakala esibalulekileyo esifanele sikhunjulwe kukuba: Logama nje kusabanda, ukutya kufanele kukhuseleke.

Ukutya okukwifriji kungakhuseleka okoko nje:

  • Ukucima kombane akuhlali ngaphezu kweeyure ezine
  • umnyango wefriji uvaliwe
  • iqondo lobushushu lesikhenkcisi lalikwi-4 °C xa kwakuqalisa ukucima.

Imiba yokhuseleko lokutya kubandakanywa ukonakaliswa kunokwenzeka ukuba yenzeke ngeempahla ezitshabalalayo ezifana nenyama entsha, inkukhu, intlanzi, i-cheeses ethambileyo, ubisi, kunye nokutya okushiyekileyo (kuxhomekeke ekubeni zigcinwe ixesha elingakanani ngaphambi kokuba kuqale ukuchithwa komthwalo). Ubushushu obucetyiswayo ukuba ifriji isebenze kuyo, ukuze ukutya kuhlale kukhuselekile ukusetyenziswa, yi-4°C. Ngoko ke lukhetho olungcono ukulahla ukutya okonakalayo okugcinwe kwisikhenkcisi esisebenza kwiqondo lobushushu elingaphezulu kwe-4°C, ngakumbi xa kucinywa umthwalo kangangeeyure ezimbini (2) okanye ngaphezulu.

iibhaktheriya ezahlukeneyo zikhula kumaqondo obushushu ahlukeneyo. kuzo zonke i-1°C enyuka ngaphezu kweqondo lokushisa elincinci lokukhula, izinga lokukhula kwebhaktheriya liyaphindaphinda (kuxhomekeke kuhlobo, indawo yokuhlala kunye nokufikelela kwizondlo). Ngoko ke kubalulekile ukugcina ucango luvaliwe ukuqinisekisa ukuba ifriji ihlala ibanda kangangoko kunokwenzeka ngexesha lokumka kombane.

Ukuba ucango lwesikhenkcezisi luhlala luvaliwe, ukutya okunomkhenkce kuya kuhlala kungumkhenkce ukuya kutsho kwiiyure ezingama-48. Ukutya okonakalayo kufuneka kuphekwe ngokukhawuleza ukuba kuqalise ukunyibilika. Ukukhenkcisa kwakhona ukutya okonakalayo kuyingozi.

Ngokujonga amaxabiso okutya, umntu uyathandabuza ukukulahla, kodwa ulinganisa umngcipheko wokutya ukutya okungakhuselekanga – kungcono ukulahla. Ezinye izinto ezibolayo zisenokunganuki okanye zingcamle ngokwahlukileyo kodwa zinokuzaliswa ziibhaktheriya ezibangela izifo ezibangelwa kukutya.

Ukuba umntu uyayazi ishedyuli yokucinywa kombane, unokuzilungiselela ngolu hlobo lulandelayo:

  • Qinisekisa ukuba iqondo lobushushu kwisikhenkcisi liyi-4 °C okanye likufutshane kuyo kangangoko.
  • Intsalela ekhenkcezisiweyo, ubisi, inyama entsha kunye nenkukhu, intlanzi, kunye nezinye iimpahla kufuneka zisuswe efrijini zisiwe kwisikhenkcisi osenokungayifuni ngoko nangoko.
  • Thenga ukutya okutsha ngemilinganiselo emincinci, kulungiselele ngokukhawuleza, kwaye ukonwabele kunokuba ukuthenge ngobuninzi uze ukugcine efrijini.
  • Qaphela ngokukhethekileyo ukuthenga izinto ezihlala ixesha elide, ezifana nokutya okungavulwanga okunkonkxiweyo kunye neziselo ezinobushushu obungenazintsholongwane okanye obushushu kakhulu. Ezi zinobomi obude beshelufa ngaphandle kwefriji, nangona kunjalo, nje ukuba zivulwe, nazo zifuna ukugodoliswa.
  • Enye indlela esetyenziswayo ukugcina iimpahla ezitshabalalayo zibanda kangangoko kunokwenzeka kukubeka iipakethe zomkhenkce ujikeleze izinto ezisefrijini.


16 December 2022 Media Release: No Pets Allowed – The Rules for Food Premises

Media Release: No Pets Allowed – The Rules for Food Premises

For Immediate Release
16 December 2022

The food-trading sector is responsible for ensuring that food safety management procedures are followed at all times. The Environmental Health Practitioners (EHP) of the Garden Route District Municipality are responsible for enforcing these procedures at food handling premises within each local town.

Food handling premises refer to any location where food is manufactured, processed, produced, packed, prepared, kept, offered, transported, stored, or displayed for sale or for serving to the public in any serving area. The current regulation governing general hygiene requirements for these premises, as well as the transport of food and related matters, is Regulation 638 of June 22, 2018. This regulation was promulgated under the Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act of 1972 (Act 54 of 1972).

According to Regulation 638, article 10, the person in charge of food premises must ensure that: “An animal, subject to the provisions of any law, is not kept or permitted in a room or area where food is handled, except that – (a) a guide or service dog accompanying a person with a disability may be permitted in the sales or serving area of the food premises.”

This means that no animals (including domestic pets) are allowed at food premises or in any area where food is being served to the public, except in the case of a guide or service dog accompanying a person with a disability. It is the responsibility of all food premises owners and managers to familiarize themselves with the relevant legislation and requirements of the Act to ensure compliance with these regulations.

Offences: Any person who violates these regulations or allows such a violation to occur will be considered guilty of an offence and subject to the following penalties as provided for under Section 18 of the Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act of 1972:

  1. On first conviction: R400.00
  2. On second conviction: R800.00
  3. On the third conviction: R2 000.00

Feature image: Shutterstock.


Promo Article: Movie nights at De Hoek Mountain Resort and Calitzdorp Hot Springs

Movie nights at De Hoek Mountain Resort and Calitzdorp Hot Springs

This holiday season, De Hoek Mountain Resort and Calitzdorp Hot Springs have teamed up with Open Plan Pictures and local businesses to present outdoor film screenings at municipal-owned resorts in the Klein Karoo.

Experience the magic of movie night under the stars by purchasing tickets for R80 (per adult) and R40 (per child).

On each day, they will also offer package deals that include food, and wine. Follow the links below to book your tickets and join us for a festive evening of entertainment.

Book here at De Hoek Mountain Resort:

Book here at Calitzdorp Hot Springs:

Who is the company ‘Open Plan Pictures’?

Their aim is to share the magic of movie entertainment with people of all ages and cultures – bringing them together in a fun and relaxed atmosphere. Whether it may be an open-air cinema & picnic, old-school drive-ins or showcasing a great film indoors at a stunning venue – they promise to take you beyond the stars!

Open Plan Pictures also offer the cinematic experience & screen for private functions on a rental basis and provide live sports streaming.

Apart from the fantastic entertainment value, Open Plan Pictures is dedicated to empowering the people we work with and providing employment to the Garden Route youth who are interested in filmmaking.

They collaborate with local charities and schools – it means so much to us to bring people together and make them smile.

13 December 2022 Media Release: Resource management, land restoration and legislation take centre stage in the Garden Route

Media Release: Resource management, land restoration and legislation take centre stage in the Garden Route

For Immediate Release
13 December 2022

“The Southern Cape and Garden Route is experiencing rapid development and has to make provision to accommodate a fast-growing population, and this more often than not generates friction and anxiety between authorities and landowners where legislation and capacity to e.g. process applications hampers development or where various sets of legislation are seemingly contradictory where for instance land rehabilitation and invasive alien plant eradication is of concern,” says Cobus Meiring of the Garden Route Environmental Forum (GREF).

“ GREF is hosting its annual key- stakeholder report-back event on 13 December in Wilderness, where regional conservation and environmental management entities and individuals will provide insight on matters pertaining to resource management and land restoration.”

“There is a continued need to understand the linkages between ensuring a high standard of living in the Southern Cape, new development, loss of biodiversity, destruction of wetlands and wildlands and unsustainable pressure on natural resources such as water, and the finding of solutions for environmental challenges are increasingly relevant.”

“In addition to the matters mentioned above, the Garden Route is already experiencing and recording evidence of rising sea levels and climate change, and these are all the more reasons for those who share a concern for the state of the environment to make their voices heard and intensify the environmental debate in order to ensure that sustainability and resilience of natural resources remain top of the regional agenda.”

The Garden Route Environmental Forum (GREF) is a public platform and think tank for all those in the Southern Cape involved in active and ongoing conservation and environmental management effortsThose interested in the event can email Louise Mare

Caption: The Garden Route is a place of natural scenic beauty, and every effort must be made to conserve its sensitive environment


09 December 2022 Media Release: The effects of drought growing and prolonged electricity disruptions are increasing

Media Release: The effects of drought growing and prolonged electricity disruptions are increasing

For immediate release
09 December 2022

Local municipalities throughout the Garden Route and the country at large, are experiencing difficulties because of the persistent load-shedding caused by ESKOM. This has a ripple effect on the supply of water, sanitation services and budgets of all municipalities. In light of this, the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) Council has given the GRDM administration the go-ahead to do everything in its power to avert any crisis that may happen as a result of the ongoing outages and drought. GRDM Disaster Management will coordinate the short- and long-term interventions required.

According to Ald. Memory Booysen, GRDM Executive Mayor: “The administration is investigating if declaring a local drought disaster is necessary, be it for one area, a few or the entire region”.

“We also need municipalities to state if they support the GRDM to become a water services authority or not because if we have their support we will stand a greater chance to become one and will be able to act more proactively to safeguard the region from water-related disasters.”

Over the past few months, the region grappled with below-normal rainfall patterns. Severe drought in particularly the Klein Karoo, vandalism and theft all over the region and other challenges have left many municipalities focusing a lot of time to do damage control.

Some of the public concerns raised are that water infrastructure is deteriorating; load-shedding causes frequent and continuous interruptions of water supply; repairs to leaks are not always done speedily; generators are not maintained; not all municipalities have water infrastructure maintenance plans in place for the foreseeable future.

The cost of generators and maintaining them remains a challenge. Not enough funding is speedily routed back from other spheres of Government to Local Government to roll out emergency interventions. It requires declaring a region as a disaster to be able to access large sums of funding. For instance, when purchasing a 100KVA generator to pump water from a borehole, a municipality would require more than R400 000 for the infrastructure, R40 000,00 for security per month per generator; more than R140 000 per month for diesel per generator; R10 000,00 for maintenance per month. This will then only serve one borehole.

The running costs per generator will, therefore, be R200 000,00 per month. This is on top of the estimated R400 000,00 to purchase one generator. Generators are also on backorder, meaning that the district will only be able to get generators in three (3) months.

See here: How load shedding is tearing through South Africa’s economy


5 December 2022 Media Statement 4: Several beaches given the ‘green light’

Media Statement 4: Several beaches given the ‘green light’

For Immediate Release
5 December 2022

One week later and clean-up operations of beaches along the Garden Route will continue following the reports of stranded hydrocarbon, low-sulphur oil droplets. These droplets were found along the coastline of the Garden Route towards the end of November 2022.

According to Gerhard Otto, GRDM Manager: Disaster Management, several beaches are now classified as ‘green’, and priority is to finalise cleaning busier beaches, including Blue Flag ones, as the holiday season moves closer. “We are also meeting less frequently now as beaches return to normal. We will only meet at 14h00 on Thursday again.”

There have been no reports linking the oil spill to humans, birds, or marine life.

Members of the media and public can access the real-time colour-coded map of the region here to see the status of beaches:

The status of beaches is included below:


Next update: Another update will be issued tomorrow, 8 December 2022.

If any member of the public notices small black pellets on any beach along the Garden Route, please report it to the Emergency Call Centre, 044 805 5071.

The Garden Route District Municipality Multi-Agency Command Centre (MACC)  includes the following stakeholders:  Garden Route District Municipality, Bitou, Knysna, George, Mossel Bay and Hessequa Municipalities, Provincial Disaster Management Centre, South African Maritime Safety Authority, DFFE: Oceans-to-Coast, Transnet, CapeNature, PetroSA, South African National Parks (SANParks) and the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB).