Due to persistent and relentless pressure by Feike, the Department of Fisheries has been forced to accept that it cannot lawfully withhold any person's annual fishing permit and annual fishing levies are due and payable only on the issue of a valid and proper tax invoice.
In other words, the obligation is on DAFF to determine the levy amount and how it is quantified and then to issue a tax invoice to each right holder requesting payment of the levy within a specified period. The Minister would be well advised to amend her levies regulations and specify the levying and payment procedures if DAFF is to legally collect any further fish levies.
In short, right holders must not pay any levy to the MLRF/DAFF until and unless DAFF issues proper tax invoices. Further, DAFF cannot lawfully withhold any permit because levies are not paid. DAFF must therefore get its house in order or accept that it will not be entitled to the more than R70-90 million in levies that it ought to collect each year.