July 16 - The Chokka fishing boat Maredon capsized at Sunset Rocks, Cape St Francis. Photo: NSRI St Francis Bay

Cape Town - Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has sent condolences to the families of the fishermen who died after the fishing vessel Maredon capsized along the Cape St Francis coastline in the Eastern Cape on Sunday.

Reports indicate that eight of the crew are still missing, while one has been confirmed dead and seven rescued.

Chairperson of the committee, Rosina Semenya, said: "Our prayers are with the families of the eight fishermen who are missing and we send our condolences to the family of the one person who was found dead.”

In the statement, Semenya said that fishing was the mainstay livelihood for many families living along the coast of South Africa and "we are saddened that many families will now be without their breadwinners". 

The Portfolio Committee was awaiting a report from the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on the incident.
 
Semenya thanked all authorities involved in the multi-agency search and rescue operation for the missing squid fishers, including amongst others, the South African Maritime Safety Authority, Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the National Sea Rescue Institute, South African Police Service and local agencies.