A fleet of 9 vessels were spotted on South African waters over the weekend. The Department of Agriculture‚ Forestry and Fisheries suspected the vessels of fishing illegally in South African waters.
One of the 9 vessels was seized and escorted into Cape Town harbour by a coastal protection vessel on Saturday. It was found to be a Chinese fishing trawler and is expected to be searched for evidence of illegal fishing.
CapeTalk’s Pippa Hudson spoke to Department of Agriculture‚ Forestry and Fisheries Minister, Senzeni Zokwana to hear more about their findings on the seized vessel.
According to the Minister, when they first caught up with the vessels, they claimed they were on their way to Angola.
Listen to the full conversation below:
He says the seized vessel will be charged for coming into the country without a permit, disobeying lawful instructions to dock, and animal cruelty as they found dogs which they believe were being badly treated.
The minister also said that they are still monitoring the other 8 vessels and they are aware that five of them are currently within Namibian waters.
Although they were no signs of fishing on the seized vessel, the minister says they can't rule that out.
The Minister said that he is happy that the country’s monitoring system is good in that they managed to track the vessels and seize one of them.