The Gauteng Tourism Authority (GTA) has appointed Yoland Ruiters as its new CEO, effective May 1, following an extensive recruitment process.

Ruiters holds a Master of Management degree from the Wits School of Governance, as well as numerous executive leadership development qualifications, and was seconded to the GTA the previous year following the end of contract of the previous CEO.

Nomusa Mufamadi, the Chairperson of the GTA’s Board of Directors, explains: “During her acting tenure at GTA, Ruiters’ work focused on the development of a high-performance-driven organisational culture and systems, with a special emphasis on sound governance and administration. She also presided over the development of an integrated stakeholder management strategy and the re-engineering of the agency’s business processes and value proposition. Without a doubt, this work helped in shaping her insights into the management and promotion of sound relations between government agencies and its shareholder, a prerequisite for sound governance and heightened delivery for the task at hand.”

Accepting her new appointment, Ruiters emphasised and promised to elevate the mantra that tourism is private-sector led, government supported, community based and labour intensive. “Township tourism products, beneficiation and promotion, the drive to get locals and government decision-makers across the different spheres to appreciate the value of tourism, leveraging business tourism opportunities, the bidding and hosting of mega events in Gauteng, bringing new innovations, especially around the opportunities associated with the Fourth Industrial Revolution in our destination marketing work, coupled with partnership-driven destination management activities, will be our key focus areas, working together with the tourism industry players in the province,” says Ruiters.

According to Gauteng Tourism, tourism continues to employ approximately 4% of the total provincial workforce and contributes 3% to the province’s GDP by region. More than 300 000 people are employed by the sector in Gauteng, contributing round €3bn per annum to the provincial economy.