Pretoria: Cabinet has endorsed the appointment of Professor Edith Vries as the new Director-General for the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
After the suspension of Langa Zita as DG in June last year, the department appointment Sipho Ntombela as Acting DG.
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson said Professor Vries brings to the position a wide range of skills, experience and was best placed to steer the department in the best interests of all three functions.
Joemat-Pettersson said Vries also brings a significant track record of high performance executive level leadership in the public and private sectors, which includes international research experience in development.
“She carries the expertise to further strengthen the organisation from being a regulatory department into a developmental hub for the sectors,” she said.
Since October 2006, Vries has held the position of executive head in the CEO’s office at the Independent Development Trust (IDT).
In this position, Vries was a development specialist responsible for positioning the IDT as an opinion maker in the development sector and as an instrument for innovation in sustainable development and poverty eradication.
Vries was formerly a senior official in government at the Department of Welfare (now the Department of Social Development) and has extensive experience in the public sector, specialising in transformation and change management.
She previously worked at the following institutions and government departments: SHAWCO; University of Bristol, UK; Harvard University, USA; University of the Western Cape, Associate Professor; senior official at the national Department of Welfare; and MTA Consulting.
She currently serves as a board member at the Medical Research Council (MRC).