MEC Sihle Zikalala in Richards Bay.

DURBAN - ECONOMIC development MEC Sihle Zikalala has sent condolences to the family of the KwaZulu-Natal Shark Board employees who drowned when their boat capsized on Wednesday.

The employees had been serving shark nets when the boat capsized. Two people died, two survived when they were rescued by a NSRI rescue boat and one more person is still missing.

The department said Zikalala, Richards Bay Mayor Mduduzi Mhlongo and Mthokozisi Radebe, KZN Sharks Board chief executive, visited the survivors in hospital on Wednesday.

“We would like to send our sincere condolences to the families of our employees who passed on. We also wish those who survived the ordeal  a speedy recovery. Our officials together with the National Sea Rescue Institute and Portnet are currently searching for the missing employee”, Zikalala said.

Zikalala talking on the incident, said: “We have been informed that the seas suddenly changed when they were already working thus tipping the boat over - amid being operated by one of our very experienced skippers who had been with the Sharks Board for more than 18 years. He has won a numerous awards for exceptional performance,” Zikalala said.

Psychological counselling has been offered to victims by the Sharks Board.