South Africa’s Fishing Rights Allocation Process (FRAP) is once again in the news this week. According to the press the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) has appointed a new, three-member advisory panel to assist Minister Senzeni Zokwana with the 2015/16 FRAP, which has caused much anger and frustration amongst local fishing communities.
Advocate Patric Mzolisi Mtshaulana, Dr George Mukundi Wachira and Thulani Joseph Sithole have been appointed to an advisory panel by the Minister to assist with the evaluation of appeals lodged against the decisions taken during FRAP 2015/16.
DAFF spokesperson, Bomikazi Molapo, says that Minister Zokwana intends to announce his decisions systematically and on a sector-by-sector basis over the coming weeks. He will be starting with appeals lodged in the Hake Inshore Trawl Fishery followed by appeals lodged in the Patagonian Toothfish Fishery.
DAFF has also made headlines this week after pouring cold water on plans by the City to take control of some local harbours, citing the argument that council’s proposed by-law for fishing harbours cannot supersede the Marine Living Resources Act (MLRA).
The City has responded by saying that it has no choice but to forge ahead with its plans, saying that it has the power to manage harbours in its jurisdiction, as the constitution gives municipalities the exclusive competence to administer the functional areas listed in Schedule 5, Part B.
According to Deputy Mayor, Ian Neilson, the move by the City came about after engagements with the Department of Public Works for the proper administration of harbours within the City’s jurisdiction proved futile.
The Department of Public Works has offered no response.