The troubled department of agriculture, forestry and fisheries is looking to get its house in order in the new year following months of instability which compromised its ability to fulfil basic tasks such allocating fishing rights and enforcing regulations. The instability in the department is also said to have contributed to the exodus of scientists and other staff members who play a key role in research and development. The problems at the department threaten SA’s fisheries sector in particular, which has annual sales of more than R5bn, and is seen as a key jobs driver in coastal areas. Earlier in 2018, agriculture‚ forestry and fisheries minister Senzeni Zokwana accused his director-general Mike Mlengana of an “abuse of power” after the latter suspended a senior official in the department. Mlengana had suspended Sipokhazi Ndudane‚ who is deputy director-general responsible for fisheries‚ after she was accused of misconduct including fraud and theft. Ndudane subsequently approache...

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