Sustainable coastal management and the Admiralty Reserve in Umdoni Municipality : towards an understanding of the Admiralty Reserve encroachments.
Duma, David Makhosonke.
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The dissertation's point of departure and contention is that the Admiralty Reserve is one of the Coastal Resources facing degradation due to the fact that it is a common property owned by the State President on behalf of all citizens of South Africa. The environmental management function has become the unfunded mandate of local authorities therefore the administration, control and management of the Admiralty Reserve is the responsibility of local government in terms of various lease agreements. There are currently no specific tools available to local government to manage the Admiralty Reserve. The encroachment of the Admiralty Reserve has been and still is a problem for all coastal municipalities including Umdoni municipality. The rationale for the topic was to study the geography of the Admiralty Reserve, the causes of encroachments and the way in which the local authorities dealt (past and present) with the Admiralty Reserve encroachments; to assess the strategies employed by the municipalities in dealing with encroachments, and with the traditional and evolving functions of the Admiralty Reserve. This was done using standard research methods and techniques. The study is located in one of the small coastal municipalities of South Africa called Umdoni, in the Province of Kwazulu-Natal. The results of the study show that the past and present strategies of dealing with encroachments were adversarial in stance and not collaborative. The failure to administer and manage efficiently can be attributed to the following reasons: lack of capacity to deal with environmental matters and legislation, lack of political willpower, negligence on the part of both national and local government spheres, lack of stewardship, lack of proper education, training and knowledge of environmental issues and negative attitudes towards environmental matters. It was also revealed that generally people encroach into the Reserve because of greed and selfishness. One of the conclusions drawn from the findings was that the Admiralty Reserve has become a victim of fragmented control and management by various spheres of government. The Admiralty Reserve requires an integrated management approach that incorporates civic organizations, the relevant government departments, the local authority and the interested and affected individuals. Local authorities are not given proper tools to manage the Admiralty Reserve. There are many laws but none of them are relevant to the Admiralty Reserve. In the absence of usable legislative tools relevant to the Admiralty Reserve encroachments, it is highly recommended and imperative that coastal local authorities (particularly Umdoni Municipality) should formulate and strengthen their bylaws.