The Kruger National Park was proclaimed on 31 May 1926 under the newly formed National Parks Board of Trustees, which became the controlling body of the Park, and reported to the Minister of Lands. However, the proclamation was made possible and preceded by much activity: The so called Government Game Reserve (Gouvernements Wildtuin) was proclaimed by the South African Republic (SAR - more or less comprising current provinces of Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng and North West) on 26 March 1898. This game reserve comprised the area between the Sabie and Crocodile rivers. This was a tumultuous period in our history and less than a year later on 11 October 1899,
SAR President Paul Kruger declared war on the British Empire after it had rejected his ultimatum of 9 October 1899 to withdraw its troops massed on the borders of the SAR. The South African War was to last nearly two years until 31 May 1902 when the South African and the Free State Boer Republics lost their independence. During the last few months of the South Africa War, the Government Game Reserve was re-proclaimed by the British authority and the Sabi Game Reserve was proclaimed in June 1902. In 1903 the Shingwedzi Game Reserve was proclaimed. This covered the area between the Letaba and Luvuvhu rivers. On 28 August 1903 a vast tract of the current Kruger National Park, namely that between the Sabie and Olifants rivers was added to the Sabi Game Reserve. Over subsequent years many farms and areas were added or removed until the Kruger National Park proclamation, after which this again continued to take place.
The KNP is the largest and oldest park administered by South African National Parks (SANParks). Tourism was formally conceived in the 1923 when first tourist visited the Park by train. The first overnight facilities were opened in 1928, at Pretoriuskop, Satara and Skukuza (then known as Sabi Bridge)
? 1950s the emerging of Scientific researchers in the park whilst the 1960's bring drought and water for game projects. In the 1990s the concept of co-operative management started to become a reality the People and Conservation Department is formed mainly to promote community access and benefit sharing for the neighbouring communities. In the early 2000s, an agreement is signed by Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe; which endorses the creation of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Park, to become one of the greatest conservation area in Africa extending over some 35 000 square kilometres.
In the mid 2000,s, for the 1st time, the views and ideas from outside stakeholders are incorporated into an all-encompassing management plan as per the new protected areas act. The objective of this process is to establish what stakeholders regard as valuable and the qualities that make the Park a conservation community that it is so that the plan should make provision for such issues. Tourism, cultural heritage, safety and security and environmental education, wilderness and community conservation are some of the issues that form part of the consultations. After 2010, SANParks adopts a vision that says “National Parks connecting to society” and that becomes a turning point in terms of how we as SANParks looks at issues affecting the communities around us. In the past, the approach to community development was more of providing access to benefits that accrue from our business.
In the middle of 2010, a Damage Causing Animal (DCA) Protocol between the KNP and LEDET is reviewed in an attempt to reduce the impact by animals that cause damage in communities. Implementation of the financial compensation to the affected stakeholders starts in both Mpumalanga and Limpopo provinces. To date, Corporate Social Investment (CSI) is added, wherein the organization aims at providing facilities and resources that can benefit the
whole community to ensure that a society, resources are spread to all citizens. The 1st Corporate Social Investment project, in line with the organization’s vision “SANParks connecting to society”, is the handover of a
computer laboratory at Masiza High School, in Mbaula, a village outside Phalaborwa (Limpopo). A R2, 2 million administration block handover to Dumisani High School at Cork, a village outside Kruger Gate (Bushbuckridge
– Mpumalanga) follows. There has been more handovers of school science laboratories in communities bordering the National Parks since then.