Relief for chokka fishermen

THE povertystricken fishing industry in Nelson Mandela Bay will get a reprieve this month with the introduction of interim line-fishing permits for squid fishermen who are out of a job because of the season closure.

The chokka industry last month accepted a proposal to have a closed squid season for this month, next month and June because of dwindling stock out at sea.

The move has left more than 2 000 already-battling Eastern Cape fishermen without a source of income.

At a meeting with parliamentary committee on agriculture, forestry and fisheries chairman Lulu Johnson yesterday, more than 300 fishermen and women were given short- and long-term solutions to some of the issues they face.

Johnson, wearing green overalls, said the delegation was in Port Elizabeth to respond to the cries of the struggling workers, who were left without an income when boat owners decided to close for the season early.

 - Thulani Gqirana 
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