An abalone right holder recently narrated two such incidences in October this year alone, which epitomise the failure of the department and frustration of law-abiding abalone right holders who are literally having to watch their livelihood being stolen from them by blatant illegality and mind-boggling incompetence or corruption or both. One cannot but ask: Are DAFF officers part of the abalone poaching syndicates?
13 October 2014
I drove past Harderbaai in Onrus river. Spotted 9 divers in the water. Phoned DAFF in Hermanus, time 18h55 . They said they knew about them. Followed up next morning, no arrests or confiscations were made. DAFF’s response was that they did go to the scene, but the people were all ready in the water, so they could do nothing! The poachers were not stopped during their poaching operations.
14 October 2014
I drove past Harderbaai in Onrus river. Spotted 2 DAFF vehicles in open sight, each with 2 inspectors. Also spotted six divers on the rocks. They are wet and have been diving. DAFF inspectors are just sitting in their vehicles. I follow up the next morning. No arrests were made, no confiscations were made and the poachers were not stopped during their operations.
Another incident in October involved a spear fisherman who informed DAFF officers that there were illegal abalone divers near Asbaai. He was told that it was not their job to arrest abalone poachers.