WINDHOEK, 19 JUN – Fishing rights and quotas should be granted and allocated to the 14 regions or to communities rather than to individuals as is the case now, Swanu President Tangeni Iijambo has proposed.
His remarks come a few days after Justice Minister, Sacky Shanghala on Saturday noted that fishing quotas were “not for everybody”.
In a statement issued to the media on Sunday, the Swanu leader explained that by so doing, all the regions will have an income and would thus remain self-sustaining through managing their fishing quotas sustainably and with accountability.
Speaking separately to Nampa, Okakarara Constituency Councillor Vetaruhe Kandorozu of Nudo echoed similar sentiments as that of Iijambo.
“When you give fishing quotas to an individual, you enrich one person and his family. But when you give the same to a local authority or regional council, you uplift a community,” he stressed.
Shanghala urged Namibians to diversify their businesses and was stunned by the sudden interest in the acquisition of fishing rights.
“Now the new thing is fishing quotas, fishing rights… People, it’s not for everybody. If it were for everybody, then fine…” said Shanghala.
He advised the public to not just look at fishing quotas, but be prepared to work hard.
The application for fishing rights has been a thorny issue, among politicians and in the public domain alike.
The issue featuring prominently is the PTY (Ltd) requirement, which excludes poor and vulnerable Namibians from participating, according to many.
However, Shanghala believes the contrary, saying the PTY (Ltd) requirement is to protect the poor masses from exploitation, explaining that in the previous application format, prospective fishing right holders were required to have a Close Corporation (CC).
There are currently 107 fishing rights up for grabs for the next 20 years.