Overstrand Executive Mayor, Alderman Dudley Coetzee, officially opened the Whale Festival in Hermanus last night.

This annual festival starts today, and runs until Sunday afternoon.

The following are excerpts of his speech:

It is an honour and an absolute delight to be standing before you tonight to welcome to all to this the 27th annual Whale Festival.  Hermanus as the hub of the Overstrand, once again bears the distinct pleasure of playing host to this highly acclaimed event.

This year, visitors will be treated to a full festival programme.  One, that is marked by the splendor of quality crafters, sumptuous food and wine, great sporting activities and entertainment of a caliber that exceeds even those previously presented.

While the whales will always remain the star performers, these mammoth marine beauties will share the stage with a host of performing artists over the duration of the festival.  Some of the highlights include Good Hope FM

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Join us in celebrating unity in diversity!

Mt Pleasant sports ground from 10 am – entrance free

• LIVE ENTERTAINMENT • TRADITIONAL FOOD & DRINK • KIDDIES CORNER

Let's plant for the future during Arbour Month

Last week’s cold, wet wintery weather did little to dampen the excitement when the Deep Blue Ambassadors once again participated in the Municipality’s greening events to celebrate Arbour Month in Gansbaai.

17 Wild Olives and Cape Ash trees were planted on the high school grounds of Gansbaai Academia in partnership with Dyer Island Conservation Trust’s Environmental Education Programme (known as DEEP), Marine Dynamics and International Marine Volunteers.

The Deep Blue programme focuses on several lessons per term about fauna and flora of the marine environment, whilst improving environmental management at the schools as well as environmental learning. The aim is to ensure that the children adopt a healthy respect for nature and a love for the environment; ultimately leading to studies in the field of marine conservation and future employment in the field.

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Many residents are rightfully concerned about the abrupt halt to waste recycling activities in the Overstrand since the riots in Hermanus in July 2018.

Unfortunately the fact is the material recovery facility in Hermanus, including all the equipment, has been destroyed during the riots, to such an extent that the repair and re-commissioning thereof may take years to complete. 

There is no alternative facility available in the area where sorting and bailing of such volumes of recycled waste can take place in the interim.

The transport of material which has not been sorted and bailed is very expensive, and therefore not attractive to potential buyers in neighbouring towns or the city.

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A number of discussions took place over the past two days with various Stakeholders regarding the situation in Zwelihle.  These included a meeting last night between members of Zwelihle Renewal and the Administration of the Municipality, which was facilitated by the Human Rights Commissioner, Rev. Chris Nissen.  One of the outcomes of this meeting was that the work of the Housing Task team appointed by the Minister of Human Settlements in the Western Cape, Minister Bonginkosi Madikizela, which was temporally suspended as a result of the unrest in Zwelihle, will recommence urgently. 

Such a request has been forwarded to the relevant officials and the Executive Mayor, Ald Dudley Coetzee, will also discuss this matter with the Minister during a meeting that is scheduled to take place in Cape Town tomorrow. 

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