DA wants answers from Smuts Ngonyama

The ANC’s head of the Presidency must explain why he set up meetings between government officials and a fishing company in which his family holds interests, the Democratic Alliance said on Sunday.

”Smuts Ngonyama is not the Minister of Environmental Affairs. He must therefore explain why he set up meetings between marine and coastal management bureaucrats and private company Bato Star to secure fishing rights for the latter,” DA member of Parliament Marius Swart said in a statement.

The Mail & Guardian reported on Friday that Ngonyama’s intervention broke a deadlock between the two parties over compliance with rules to prevent overfishing.

Ngonyama holds a 6,75% interest in Bato Star which he ”had not yet paid for”.

Ngonyama’s sister Nozipho Mgaga holds a 45% stake in Bato Star through a company called Amandl Olwandle.

A Bato Star director — Babalwa Ngonyama — is related to Smuts by marriage, the Mail & Guardian reported.

”The fact that Bato Star has been charged with over-fishing makes an explanation of this deal from Ngonyama particularly urgent,” said Swart.

He also called on Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism Minister Marthinus Van Schalkwyk to instruct the fishing rights verification unit to see whether Bato Star complied with the requirements of the new fishing policies.

The newspaper quoted Ngonyama as saying he telephonically arranged a meeting between the parties to discuss the licensing of the Bato Star trawler Sandile. ‒ Sapa

We make it make sense

If this story helped you navigate your world, subscribe to the M&G today for just R30 for the first three months

Subscribers get access to all our best journalism, subscriber-only newsletters, events and a weekly cryptic crossword.”

Related stories


Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Latest stories

G is for glamour, not garage shop

Pantry by Marble is disrupting the forecourt shop status quo by offering restaurant-quality services on site

If the state won’t deal with civil war criminals, then...

Liberia decided not to prosecute anyone for crimes committed during its first and second civil wars. Now, one organisation is documenting and aiding prosecution outside the country

Home Suite Hotel: A hidden gem in Sea Point

Founded by the man behind LIFT Airlines, Gidon Novick, Home Suite Hotel knows a thing or two about curating a fresh experience on an old concept.

Latest design and foodie trends at Durban Home Garden Show

The event celebrates 40 years of the city’s design scene. The 2022 edition brings together fashion folk, beer culture, architecture and greenery, while giving visitors their cultural fix

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…