Right holders in the Cluster A and B sector fisheries would have by now received correspondence from the Fisheries Branch on their performance measuring submissions which were lodged with the department back in 2010.
The correspondence confirms that the results of the performance review do not constitute administrative action for the purposes of the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act, 2 of 2000 and that should right holders wish to object to any of the assessment data, that these objections may be lodged with the department and will be kept on file.
Whether or not the assessments constitute "administrative action" that is reviewable is debatable. The assessments would not constitute administrative action only if the assessments are not used to directly affect the rights of quota holders.
In other words, should the department use the assessment results to reduce, cancel or revoke a quota subsequent to a section 28 process or not re-allocate a fishing permit, then the assessment results would be reviewable under PAJA.
Our advice to right holders would be to -
- carefully scrutinize the assessment results and ensure that these accord with the submissions made in terms of the RFI application process; and
- where there are any anomalies, that these are communicated to the department in detail and in writing and a record of the objections carefully stored.