Congrats on your award SANParks! Now I see where my fishing license and recently ridiculous canoe license money has been going for the last 21 years since I've been in the Garden Route. I fish Sedgefield Lagoon, Swartvlei Lake and the beaches in the immediate area. We've been promised a public slipway on Swartvlei Lake since I got here in 98. That's 21 years now, thank you, still NOTHING. I presume the promise has been since well before that.
Sedgefield lagoon's rules and regulation boards for boating are in such a state, that our fantastic holidaymakers that come down with no regard, can rest assured that they can safely ignore any rules and make canoeing in idle zones a Nightmare. Thank you, again.
Now with a R240/year canoe price tag on top nowadays, which is absolute ***, where is your justice in this matter? Boat licenses were cheaper than this 3 years ago, which put a small boat license out of the reach of the little people - that's why we got canoes. Now we bleed, again, thank you! What are You going to do for us dumb idiots who've been bankrolling salaries, new cars and lawn services at Ebb and Flow, Island lake etc?
It's pointless writing letters to you, because you always do the cordial thing and return with, We are looking into it. SURE!
I didn't see one SANParks staff member in Sedgefield until the 10th - 11th Jan, again, thank you for nothing!
So what are you going to do? Increase salaries and get new cars? Or actually pull your fingers out and do your JOBS?
The traffic department can also look into their side, odd road blocks now and then. What happened to delegation of duties? Or is that only for people who want to work and not people who just want a job? Do we still have to stop at stop streets, indicate, care how circles work, etc?
Enjoy the Gravy Train!
Nandi Mgwadlamba, regional communications manager of SANParks, responds:
We would like to thank Mr Louw for taking the time to write to us. We appreciate every constructive input to improve the Garden Route National Park.
The public slipway was never promised by SANParks in 1998. A proposal to develop a 'small boat harbour' by the then Knysna Municipality was investigated by various partners including SANParks after discussions about its locality. Knysna Municipality purchased the land below the N2 with an intention to house the 'small boat harbour' there. But after it was demonstrated the area would need an EIA (Environmental Impact Assessment), and after careful consideration of its financial viability, it was concluded the project would fail.
The concept of a 'small boat harbour' did not offer boat owners a free public slipway.
Boat owners were referred to Pine Lake Marina to launch their boats from there. In addition, there are two existing public slipways in the Swartvlei estuary leading to the lake where boat owners can launch their boats.
The boat and vessel tariffs were adjusted in 2015 as mentioned by Mr Louw. Tariffs were never changed in the GRNP for more than five years. Once tariffs were readjusted, CPI (Consumer Price Index) was added annually since 2015. SANParks also held various meetings with cyclists and boat and vessel owners after the readjustment to explain the reasons behind it.
We encourage feedback. Send it to GardenRoute.NationalPark@sanparks.org or provide feedback via the SANParks website or call 044 877 0046.