THE Institute for Public Policy and Research (IPPR) has accused the Namibian government of failing to address loopholes in the fishing industry which led to the Fishrot scandal.
In their recent publication, the IPPR said the government is sitting with idle hands on any improvements after the allegations of the Fishrot fishing quotas fraud and corruption case.
This case involves 42 criminal charges, which include counts of fraud, bribery, corruption, racketeering, money laundering and tax evasion.
“Three years after Fishrot was exposed, nothing has been done to end the secrecy that enabled the corruption scandal to take place,” the IPPR stated.
The IPPR wants more transparency in the fisheries sector, including publication of all rights, licences, and quota details, inclusive of beneficial ownership information.
“In addition, it calls for the urgent amendment of the Marine Resources Act to remove the minister’s discretionary power and introduce transparency measures,” said the IPPR.
This provision gives the fisheries minister power to allocate fishing quotas.
“The government will follow through on the commitments made in the Harambee Prosperity Plan II and National Anti-Corruption Strategy and Action Plan on aligning laws and practices with the standards of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative on transparency.
“This means moving towards open contracting and introducing beneficial ownership registers,” the IPPR said.