The Western Cape Minister of Agriculture, Dr Ivan Meyer, congratulated Casidra for achieving their 32nd clean audit in a row during the Company’s Annual General Meeting held at its head office in Paarl.  “This is a very good record to add to your accolade and no other single entity in the country has managed to achieved this milestone besides Casidra. Casidra has continued to fulfil its role in rural community development, and did so without placing its proud financial governance record at risk”, Minister Meyer said.

 Casidra stood firmly and resolutely as the pandemic placed the spotlight on one of the scourges of modern times, namely food security. It displayed the single-mindedness required to respond to the enormous responsibility placed on the agricultural sector and ensured that, while the rest of the world was in lockdown, food production continued unabated. By doing so, the ‘One Home, One Garden’ campaign was significantly ramped up, resulting in a record number of food gardens established in the Western Cape.

Minister Meyer also thanked all outgoing Board Members for their sterling work and valuable contributions during their tenure at Casidra.  “You demonstrated your full commitment to the vision of boosting agricultural and economic development opportunities in rural communities and I thank you for that”, said Minister Meyer.

Outgoing Chairman, Mr Ainsley Moos, and three other exiting Board members namely Mr Gerard Martin, Prof. Estian Calitz and Ms Gugu Ntuli served a collective 40 years on the Casidra Board. We are truly grateful to them.  Minister Meyer welcomed the new chairperson of the Board, Prof. Johan Kirsten, and the following incoming Board members: Ms Crystal Abdoll, Ms Emily Hendricks, Ms Thandiwe Moutlana, Ms Lebohang Mehlomakulu and Mr Angelo Petersen. “I look forward to their meaningful contributions to take the Agricultural sector to another level”, said Minister Meyer.

The former Chairperson of the Board, Ainsley Moos, thanked Casidra on behalf of all the outgoing Directors for the wonderful opportunity to serve on the Board. “We wish Casidra all the best and hope it continues to grow from strength to strength.  We thank our Executive Authority and Shareholder, Minister Meyer, for all his guidance since taking over”, Moos concluded. 

The Chief Executive Officer, Stuart Symington, alluded to the fact that Casidra’s renewed focus will be on two priorities. Firstly, it is very clear that we need to improve our performance as an implementer of projects for our Western Cape government shareholder and, more specifically, the Western Cape Department of Agriculture. There is a lot we can do to lift our game, which we will immediately start concentrating on.

The second priority is to target our efforts to be more in line with our mandate, which is to involve ourselves in agricultural development and economic development in the rural (non-metro) space of the Western Cape. Since Casidra is a Schedule 3D business aligned State-Owned Enterprise, we need to optimise on this birth right and inject a lot more commercial acumen into our business dealings with our principals and beneficiaries.  We are striving for a winning culture and want to sell trust to the investment community.

“My heartfelt gratitude goes to our Board of Directors for investing their trust in me to take leadership of this prodigious institution; our Executive Authority, Minister Meyer, for an earnest welcome to government; and Dr Mogale Sebopetsa and his Senior Management team at the Western Cape Department of Agriculture for their willingness and commitment to build excellent working relationships going into the future”, Stuart concluded.

PHOTO CAPTION- L-R: Prof Johan Kirsten (incoming Chairperson of the Board); Dr Ivan Meyer, Minister of Agriculture; Mr Ainsley Moos (outgoing Chairperson of the Board); Mr Stuart Symington, Chief Executive Officer

Share this post