South African Anglers face ban because of Chumming
CHUMMING CLOSE TO RECREATIONAL BATHING AREAS INCREASING THREAT TO PUBLIC
Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, News Release, 05. December 2011
The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality is currently considering an urgent ban on fishing close to recreational beaches after it became apparent that chumming – a custom of throwing cut-up fish in the sea to catch sharks – is taking place close to surfing, paddling and swimming areas.
The Municipality’s Beach Office recommended a ban on angling from Kings Beach (Southern) Harbour Wall to Flat Rock (Beacon) and other beaches – 500 meters away from lifeguards demarcated bathing areas – such as Bluewater Bay, St Georges Strand, Brighton Beach and Wells Estate.
Wild Side beaches such as Maitlands, Blue Horizon Bay and Van Stadens River Mouth are also included.
This decisive action follows after concerned surfers, a paddler and other stakeholders raised concerns of chumming and fishing close to recreational beaches that could be dangerous for public safety.
A Beachfront Aquatic Safety Zone was already tabled at the socio economic cluster committee, consisting of stakeholders from the municipality. It was also presented to external stakeholders.
A public participation process will now be started as soon as possible to ensure that all stakeholders have an opportunity to give input and direction on this matter.
However this does not mean that a complete ban on fishing will be implemented since angling will still be allowed from Beacon down towards Willows, Schoenmakerskop and outside bathing areas where lifeguards are on duty.
Mr Fernando Cain, Beach Office Manager, said transgressors of Public Amenities Municipal Bylaws, could face a minimum fine of R 2000 and a maximum fine of R 10 000 if the Environmental Management Act is not followed to the letter.
A decision was also taken that chumming or fishing close to recreational facilities will be monitored closely with Close Circuit Television footage to ensure compliance.
Issued on behalf of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality by Media Management Officer Kupido Baron.