Monday, September 9, 2013

DAFF in Legal LALA Land

Feike has for some time been beating on the drum that DAFF's failure to obtain Cabinet approval for the current fishing policies is a violation of section 85(2)(b) of the Constitution and thus unlawful. 

During a recent discussion about the fishing rights allocation process on SAFM, the Department's acting DDG for Fisheries, Desmond Stevens, stated that Cabinet approval is not required because the current policies make only minor changes to the 2005 policies and therefore Cabinet approval is not required! And Steven's statement is at odds with the Minister's won recent public statements where she has said that this rights allocation process and the policies are "historic" and will be completely different to previous processes. 

I hope that Stevens and his Minister have a money-back guarantee on this nonsensical "legal" advice! 

Cabinet approval is required even if minor amendments to the 2005 policies are sought because Cabinet approved these policies in the first place and therefore only Cabinet can approve any amendments. 

We reiterate that the "final" policies issued by Minister on 17 July 2013 were published without the requisite legal authority; in violation of section 85(2)(b) of the Constitution, and are thus unlawful. The entire fishing rights allocation process is therefore unlawful. Any fishing right that will be allocated in terms of these policies would similarly be unlawful and reviewable by a court of law. 

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