The minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Ms. Tina Joemat-Pettersson, should resign immediately due to the serious findings against her in the report of the Public Protector (PP) which was released today, Dr. Pieter Groenewald, the Freedom Front Plus’ parliamentary spokesperson on Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries says.
In the report it was stated, amongst others, that Joemat-Pettersson was guilty of maladministration, improper conduct, wasting taxpayers’ money and interfering in the investigation of the PP.
According to Dr. Groenewald, the FF Plus had in the past repeatedly pointed out the improper conduct of Joemat-Pettersson, but no action was taken against her.
“We have known for a long time that she is unfit for her position. She has already caused immeasurable harm to agriculture, forestry and fisheries as she consistently puts her own interests above the performing of her duties.
“The fact that in her current term there has already been seven directors-general appointed to her office, is proof that there is a serious problem in her department and we insist, in the interest of the country, that she resigns immediately,” Dr. Groenewald says.
With regards to the awarding of a tender to Sekunjalo Marine Consortium and the consequent neglect of vessels which opened up the South African coast to the poaching of its fish resources, Dr. Groenewald had pointed that out years ago and warned against it.
In a reply to a question of Dr. Groenewald in parliament in 2012, it was stated that not one of the department’s patrol vessels or research vessels was operational.
“At that time already we pointed out the minister’s incompetence and warned that the poaching of our marine resources could take place unrestricted and that taxpayers’ money was being wasted. The warning was not heeded and she was allowed to continue unhindered.
“The finding of the PP today is however damning and she can no longer remain in her post as minister,” Groenewald says.
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