Fishing communities and stakeholders who wish to submit their comments on the Draft Regulations Relating to small-Scale fishing are given another 30 days to submit their comments.

The second round of comments was effective as from the 28 of April 2015.

Last week, Coastal communities submitted their comments to the department.

Fishers supported the Small-scale fisheries (SSF) policy, but were concerned that the regulations diluted the voice of the fishers and gave too much power to the Minister.  Furthermore, they said that the regulations are not clear in terms of the purpose it needs to serve.

The gazzeting of the draft regulation is a mandatory process by the government to hear the voices of those who will be affected by the policy.

Masifundise and Coastal Links South Africa urge communities and interested parties to submit their comment to the department.

As stated in the above article about public participation, the involvement of citizens in policy-making and implementation is important to strengthen and deepen democratic governance. It is through active public participation that evidence-based policy-making and responsive service delivery can take place.

Once the process of taking in comments is done, the department will have a final draft of the regulations.

The MRLA Amendment Act must be promulgated and the target date for the promulgation is June 2015.  Once finalised, the minister will launch the official implementation of the Small-Scale Fisheries Policy.

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