The History of SAHLLA
From the desk of Andrew Kaye (Ex SAHLLA Chairman)
In 1990, when Namibia gained its independence on the 21st of March that year, a major South African tuna fishing ground was incorporated into Namibia. This reduced the amount of fish available to the South African Tuna fleet by about 50%. The South African Government agreed to address this issue on a number of occasions, but nothing was done, so the tuna fishermen took to hake long lining, in order to recover the losses from the shortage of tuna available to them.
In the early 1990’s, the tuna fishermen had demonstrated quite clearly that hake long lining was an effective and profitable way of fishing. However, since it was not subject to legitimate compliance controls, it was subsequently stopped by the Government, and a hake long line experiment was conducted from 1994 to 1996. Experimental allocations were made to different entities, including the Deep Sea Trawl Industry, Inshore Trawl, and various communities from Port Nolloth to Port Elizabeth. Naturally, the tuna fishermen were very involved in this process and started meeting together, to discuss equitable ways to allocate the experimental quotas.
Richard Ball was a leader in this process, and, together with Mr C Correia and others, helped to establish a Tuna Hake Association.
In 1997, the Government concluded that the method of catching hake was both profitable and sustainable, and late in 1997 issued the first Hake Long Line Quotas.
During this time, fishers who had been involved in the experimental process, developed a structure for a Hake Long Line Association, having its head office in Cape Town, but having 4 different branches, being the Eastern Cape, Southern Cape, Western Cape and the West Coast. In this way, it was hoped that the Association would represent as many stakeholders as possible.
Unfortunately, during the period 1997 to 2002, there were a number of allocations made which did not pass legal scrutiny, and created significant confusion in the Sector. This meant that the original Association did not get the support from an established group of fishermen in any area.
Thereafter, a number of meetings were arranged in all the areas. Finally, a committee was elected, consisting of representatives from the different Regions.
Since that time, an Executive committee was elected and has had regular meetings, and AGM’s have been held every twelve to eighteen months, at which time, new members of the committee have been elected.
Andrew Kaye was appointed the Association representative for the Demersal Scientific Working Group. He was supported by a loyal committee consisting of Adelina Correia, Celeste Diest, Alfred Malgas, Antoinette Moniz, Greg Christy, Mark Rowe, Gastao Fernandes and Mandla Gxanyana.
In 2011, Clyde Bodenham was elected Chairman of the Association.