Wednesday, 6 November 2013

This weekly update provides short bits of information on the work of Masifundise Development Trust (MDT) and Coastal Links South Africa (CLSA). It appears every Wednesday.

Marine Living Resources Act Amendment Bill in Parliament

The above Bill was adopted by the Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and has been referred to the National Assembly for consideration. It will be debated Thursday 7 November 2013. Two weeks ago, members of CLSA and MDT made submissions to parliament in support Bill. The adoption of the new legislation will allow for the implementation of the small-scale fisheries (SSF) policy.

For background information, click on the following link:

Communication Team on the move

Members of the MDT Communication team, Nosipho Singiswa and Moegsien Ismail visited communities in the Overberg region. They spoke to CL members and fisher folk from Gansbaai, Pearly beach and Buffeljagsbaai to hear their insights on fishing rights, other social issues that affect their livelihoods and take photographs for the MDT communication unit.

MDT and Coastal Links have taken their message to the people through print and electronic media. Norton Dowries and Nico Waldeck were interviewed on Radio 786 last week and a letter from MDT Director Naseegh Jaffer appeared in several community newspapers.

Click on the link to listen to the interview that was aired on Radio 786:

Exhibition planned at MDT office

A team of MDT staff and members of Coastal Links have been putting together a plan to transform the office space in Mowbray. The inside and outside of the building will contain information, graphics, photographs and artefacts related to the small-scale fishing sector. Contact MDT if you wish to participate in any way.

Rock Lobster allocation

Two thousands small-scale fishers from the West and East coasts will be receiving exemption permits for the coming Rock Lobster season. It will allow each to catch 138kg of rock lobster for the season. This emerged from a meeting between MDT and the authorities last week. As part of this allocation, 20 permits each has been set aside for Arniston and Struisbaai where line fish catches have been very bad in recent times.

The government was prepared to issue 1 800 permits, but many communities volunteered to cut their allocation, so that more people can benefit. This is an amazing act of solidarity by poor fishing communities.

Trip to West Africa

Plans for the upcoming trip to West Africa to be undertaken by Josh Cox (Masifundise) and Neville Luyt (Coastal Links) are being finalised. They leave next week Tuesday to visit communities and two national fisher organisations in Sierra Leone and to attend regional West African meetings of fisher organisations, government and NGOs in Cape Verde and Senegal.

They will gain valuable insight on this trip on the issues and challenges facing fishing communities in other parts of Africa and what can be done collectively through the Pan African Programme to address them.

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