South Africa:KNP to remove Mingerhout Dam near Letaba Camp

Media Release: KNP to remove Mingerhout Dam near Letaba Camp

13 January 2021

The Kruger National Park (KNP) in conjunction with South African National Defence Force (SANDF) will demolish Mingerhout Dam, found on the S47, about 9km north-west of Letaba Camp. The demolition operation will be conducted from Sunday, 24 January until Saturday, 6 February 2021. Explosives will be used to demolish the structure; after which the rubble will be removed as part of the rehabilitation process undertaken by the Expanded Public Works, Biodiversity Social Program.

“In between the work taking place at Mingerhout Dam, there will be some demolition for the remaining parts of Kanniedood near Shingwedzi as well. To ensure the safety of tourists, all roads in the two areas will also be temporarily closed from 24 January to 6 February 2021;” said the General Manager: Communications and Marketing, Isaac Phaahla. The affected roads are:

  • In Letaba, the affected roads are the S47 gravel road, the entire loop of S47 will be closed from the junction of S47 and H1-6 to junction of S47 and S131.
  • In Shingwedzi, the affected roads are the S50 gravel road, this will be closed from S50 and S134 junction in Shingwedzi to the S50 and S143 junction in Mooiplaas.

The then Parks Board constructed Mingerhout Dam (SANParks Asset) in 1974; which has over the years since its construction, silted up to the extent that it is no longer serving its purpose as a dam. Mingerhout is close to Engelhardt, another dam also found near Letaba (the two dams are 16 kilometres apart); management reached consensus to remove Mingerhout Dam to support the KNP rehabilitation program.

KNP has an artificial water provision policy which allows for the closing and removal of artificial water points. Artificial water holes where water did not previously occur naturally have led to numerous ecological problems such as erosion and other environmental degradations such as barriers to fish migration routes.

“Conservation Management has taken steps to rectify these negative consequences by closing and demolishing certain artificial water holes. To enhance tourist experience, alternative game viewing opportunities will be provided in the future at areas of naturally occurring surface water;” concluded Phaahla.

Issued by:
Communications & Marketing Department – Kruger National Park

Media enquiries:
Isaac Phaahla
GM: Communications and Marketing, KNP
Tel: 013 735 4363; Cell 083 673 6974
Email: [email protected]

Source – SANParks