Friday, December 20, 2013

public rights in terms of the Integrated Coastal managment act

we need some moral support from the public  see

When discussing the 4x4 ban and its negative implications for the Elephant Coast Tourism Industry I am often confronted with the question "what right do you have to challenge the 4x4 ban?"

We need to confirm these negative implications, and I feel the best way to do that is to reference an occasional paper issued by KZN Tourism in 2004  where KZN tourism alleges that more than 20 000, thats right "TWENTY THOUSAND" people lost their jobs as the result of the knock on impacts of the 4x4 ban.

we need some moral support from the public  see

Next we need to do an insitu evaluation of the folks who lost their economic opportunities, and what they can do to mitigate their situation.  The vast majority of the 20 000 plus people who become indigent due to the knock on impacts of the 4x4 ban come from the local indigenous Zulu / Tsonga people who relied a great deal on the tourism trade associated with recreational use of the Elephant Coast beaches. Many within this sector were associated with the arts and crafts industry, in one of the following areas:
a) collection and gathering of relevant raw materials for the manufacture and distribution of local arts and crafts industry
b) the actual manufacture of the arts and crafts
c) sales and distribution of locally produced arts and crafts

we need some moral support from the public  see

The next sector where there were big losses is those who provided tourism services and labor to the tourism sector.  Here we are talking of :
a) waiters, and other staff  at restaurants
b) maids and cleaning crews at lodges,B+B's , self catering establishments, camp sites,  hotels and guest houses
c) Gilly's, boat crews,  divers assistants, Tour guides,  drivers, gardeners and other official laborers
d) shop assistants, petrol attendants, front end staff, and managers of tourism businesses.

So you may ask how did the 4x4 ban cause these losses? and you would have a very valid question that is easily explained, though the explanation is complex, and has many strangely related issues. Tthe basics is that those who used to come along with the fisher folk for an outing  suddenly were asked to walk great distances to preferred fishing spots, and they rebelled against this idea, as they were along for the experience, and were not into the serious walking issue that they were suddenly confronted with.

we need some moral support from the public  see

Simple solution, these tourists who were just along for he ride suddenly disappeared off of the Elephant Coast Tourism industry's radar, along with their vast spending power as tourists or weekenders . This did not just impact on one or two areas, but was wide spread over the entire South African coastline.  Some areas were affected more than others, but I can only speak for the Elephant Coast, as I lived in the town of Mtubatuba during this time period where the Elephant Coast Tourism Industry had a very serious collapse, with the resort of Mapelane allegedly loosing more than 95 % of their annual turnover.

These statistics can easily be confirmed by the iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority (IWPA) as  they are the legal successors of the GSLWPA (Greater St. Lucia Wetlands Park Authority) who is the South African Government body appointed to manage the iSimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Park World Heritage Site which includes the Elephant Coast of KZN south Africa within the Umkhanyakude district Municipality.

we need some moral support from the public  see

Exactly how many would be recreational beach users stopped visiting the Elephant Coast is still a mystery, even after there were numerous government studies done, which were submitted to parliament, but never discussed at local municipality level, as well as the many PPP (Public Participation Process) meetings for the IWPA IMP (iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority Integrated Management Plan) and the IWPA submissions in terms of ROD a25/7/8/3/2/4 or the 4x4 ban in both sections A (6) as well as B (6) which would need to be conducted in terms of the National Environmental Management Act  (NEMA)  and associated legislation.

So we have established that in our opinion the 4x4 ban has caused a serious and very negative economic impact within the Elephant Coast of KZN South Africa. The exact size of these losses has never been discussed within the Mtubatuba local municipality during any of their annual reviews of the Mtubatuba Local Municipality Integrated Development Plan Public Representatives Forum meetings, nor at any of the WPA IMP PPP meetings.

we need some moral support from the public  see

What to do now?

Firsts we need some moral support from the public  see

next we need to attend the Mtubatuba IDP PRF meetings and present this petition along with some requests for inclusion of issues into the Mtubatuba Local Municipality IDP.

During the last few weeks starting in late October 2013 many people have been asking me to get involved in these issues once more, and I really would love to go fishing along the Elephant Coast of KZN in comfort and style, so I have opted to take up the issue as requested.

So from Jan 2014 you will start seeing  and hearing more about the ARBU and its related efforts to have the Elephant Coast tourism issues addressed at the correct political levels including the local municipality IDP and its subsequent elevation to the provincial legislature then the national legislature.

we need some moral support from the public  see

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