Fishing Skipper Murders Fishermen whilst Murdering Seals
SealAlertSA Francois Hugo Seals
Date: August 18, 2006
August 18, 2006 12:56 PM
Skipper Murders Fishermen whilst Murdering Seals
Skipper 'shoots & kills' fisherman whilst shooting at
Seal Alert-SA and its seal
supporters knew that it was only a matter of time before
fishermen murder each other whilst murdering seals in
Yesterday 17th August 2006, on a
18.5 m fishing trawler from Hout Bay, fishing off Port
Elizabeth - a fishing skipper, shot once and then reloaded
his shot-gun and shot his fisherman in the back of the head
killing him. The shot-gun is apparently unlicensed.
Fishermen on-board the vessel state the skipper had been
shooting at seals when the fishermen was hit by accident.
The police have opened a
Seal Alert-SA as well as
fishermen, the Department of Marine and Coastal Management
(MCM) which licenses these skippers, including Minister
Martinus van Schalkwyk - has known for decades that
fishermen carry guns on fishing trips with the sole
purpose of murdering protected Cape fur seals at sea.
Thousands of seals are shot and killed annually. It is a
criminal offence, but to date no fishermen have ever been
arrested, never mind prosecuted.
In July 2005, in an attempt to
have Guns Banned in Fishing, Seal Alert-SA launched an
on-line petition. http://www.petitiononline.com/Rrancois/petition.html it
has since been signed by over 9400 people in over 140
countries around the world. In addition, International
Organization for the Protection of Animals (OIPA) has
forwarded Seal Alert-SA a further 20 000 hand-written
signatures collected in Italy, alone. Bringing the total
to over 30 000 people around the world who support the
ban of guns in fishing - equal or better than the
number of licensed fishermen in South Africa.
Seal Alert-SA wishes to hand these
signed petitions to the Minister of Environmental Affairs
and Tourism, Martinus van Schalkwyk, but to date the
Minister refuses to correspond.
On the 19th July 2005, Seal
Alert-SA wrote to the Minister requesting a meeting. To
date there has been no reply.
On the 15th August 2005, Seal
Alert-SA made an official complaint with the Public
On the 6th September 2005,
Advocate Gary Pienaar (021-4238644) of the Public Protector
sent the following letter "Complaint by Seal Alert-SA:
Alleged failure by the Ministry to respond to
correspondence : Request to ban guns in the Fishing
Industry/Sector". The Minister was given 20 working days to
Seal Alert-SA was telephonically
involved by Advocate Pienaar that according to
MCM's legal representative Marius Diemont, the
Minister does not need to reply.
It is therefore the opinion of Seal
Alert-SA that based on this official letter of the Public
Protector and the deadline given last year - that the
Minister Martinus van Schalkwyk should equally be brought
up on charges, as had he in fact, acted in accordance
with the legislation, this criminal and illegal incident
would never have happened, and this fishermen would still
be alive today.
Seal Alert-SA therefore also appeals to
all fishermen to now come forward and lay criminal charges
against other fishermen who shoot seals illegally.
For the Seals
Francois Hugo Seals