Calls for government to prioritise finding missing fisherman

Spokesperson at the Department of Agriculture and fisheries Khaya Nkwanyana says Minister Senzeni Zokwana has instructed officials in his department to begin the allocation of fishing rights in four coastal provinces to small-scale fisherman and coastal communities.

Nkwanyana says they were delayed for 18 months by objections and tip-offs which were suggesting that big companies were forming cooperatives in these communities. They had to first handle that matter before they can start with allocations.

Read: Family of missing Hangberg 'poacher' want answers from authorities

The Minister said because people don't have fishing rights, it causes people to fish illegally. The three people that were caught last week and the one that drowned emanates from this factor.

Khaya Nkwanyana, Spokesperson at Department of Agriculture and fisheries

Now he instructed that officials must finish that process of dealing with the appeals and tip-offs by the end of August so that we begin the process of fast-tracking the allocation.

Khaya Nkwanyana, Spokesperson at Department of Agriculture and fisheries

Nkwanyana says they are anticipating that all the allocations in all four provinces will be complete by early 2019.

Secretary of the Hout Bay Civic Association Roscoe Jacobs says the department is failing the fishing communities which are located along the shorelines of South Africa.

He says the department is shifting the focus from the fact that the body of the missing fisherman who is alleged to have been shot by police needs to be found.

The fact that the department is stating that he has drowned without knowing what actually happened it's something that angers me. We want a government that is heeding our call and our call at the moment is that we need to ensure that Deurick's body is found.

Roscoe Jacobs, Secretary of the Hout Bay Civic Association

For us issues pertaining to fishing rights are secondary because for the last 20 year we've been getting breadcrumbs.

Roscoe Jacobs, Secretary of the Hout Bay Civic Association

Our priority now is to ensure that when people go out into sea are safe and protected. We are grateful that we will be meeting with the police to address these issues because we need to look at how the police act when they apprehend people on sea whilst they are fishing.

Roscoe Jacobs, Secretary of the Hout Bay Civic Association

To hear the rest of the interviews, listen below:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Calls for government to prioritise finding missing fisherman


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