Forensics team to tackle fishing industry fronting - minister

2015-12-14 21:04
(City Press)

(City Press)

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Cape Town – The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries will appoint a forensics team to combat "fronting" in the fishing industry.

This is according to Minister Senzeni Zokwana, who on Monday briefed media in Parliament on the status of the 2013 fishing rights appeals.

Zokwana said established fishing companies were using "fisher folk" as fronts in order to secure fishing rights.

"In many cases that have been brought before me, the poor fishers owe tax to Sars, huge sums of money, as they have been listed as directors of companies, while they have no knowledge of such and never got the monies to that effect."

He said some strides had been made to transform the industry, but there was still a lot of work to be done.

Fisheries acting deputy director general Siphokazi Ndundane said that in the past they had not done an in-depth analysis of companies before allocating fishing rights.

"This time around, on the directive of the minister, we will verify the truthfulness of the information. We will request bank statements, there will be a thorough investigation.

"We are going to put in a clause when we grant a right from February that, pending the investigation, the minister reserves the right to revoke or alter your rights."

Zokwana also said all 928 appeals had been processed.

The minister said he had also considered the last appeals in the hake hand line sector.

"I have then decided to grant hake handline fishing rights to a total of 23 appellants, adding 26 fishing vessels and creating an additional 291 crew rights."

Read more on:    senzeni zokwana  |  cape town  |  parliament 2015  |  fishing industry

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