It has been confirmed that the department of environmental affairs (DEA) will re-take control over and possession of the offshore fisheries patrol vessel, the Sarah Baartman. The Sarah Baartman, together with the remaining 2 fisheries research and 3 inshore patrol vessels, remain in Simonstown Harbour. Feike has been informed that the reason for the vessels still remaining in harbour is that SAMSA will not authorise the new service provider to take possession of the vessels.
It remains unclear as to how the DEA will deploy the vessel as fishery control officers are employed by the fisheries department. However, this minor bureaucratic can be easily attended to and probably has been addressed in the recent memorandum signed between the two departments. The most important benefit is that the Sarah Baartman will be put to sea as the DEA does not bear the same irrational and personal vendetta against Smit Amandla who was able to put the research vessel, Algoa, to sea within a couple of weeks after the fisheries department handed that vessel back to DEA in September 2012.