Chief Executive Officer's Statement
KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board Maritime Centre of Excellence Acting CEO, Mr. Harry Mbambo.
2022/3 ANNUAL REPORT CEOs STATEMENT
As 2022/3 facial year draws to a close, I want to take the opening to look back on a year that turned out much differently than anyone could have imagined. While it was certainly challenging in many ways, it also showed how strong we are as Sharks Board team even in the toughest of times our collaborated ambitions kept the ship sailing.
I’m thrilled to report that not only did we perform in the year ended in 2023, but we have already made progress against each of these ambitions. As one will see on the pages that follow, we are a purpose-driven organization with a renowned bather protection expertise, a clear strategic focus, and a passionate team that makes things happen the right way.
This moment in time has proven that when Sharks Board works together, we are able to make a difference. I am inspired by our stakeholders/shareholders, partners, community that we provide bather protection to, and staff who have risen to the unprecedented challenges of this past year. They have demonstrated resilience and a dedication to the communities we serve.
Despite uncertainty in the face of a KZN floods and later the KZN coastline had to face bacteria which is called E. coli. This has magnified and exposed social and economic inequalities, there was an unwavering commitment to our mission to lead positive systemic change that strengthens KZN communities.
High volume of rain was experienced with all the rivers bursting their banks and mountains of debris washed up on the seashore. It has been alarming to witness the amount of plastic that has been washed into the seas.
There has been a concerted drive from the public to clean up the beaches and bring back the KZN Coast to its former glory so that the tourists can return. The KZN Sharks Board teams have been hard at work cleaning the beaches, sidewalks and beach front areas to make the KZN Coastline a proud tourist destination once again like it was years ago.
As expected, with the high rainfall the sea became rough and all the rivers burst their banks and water was contaminated due to E.coli and high risk of shark activity, bathing was banned at all the beaches, most of the rivers being wide open and the water visibilities being very poor, there was a high risk of inshore shark activity, therefore, the Beach Managers were advised to keep bathing banned until the sea conditions improves, we continued our role to keep bathing banned signboards up to assist the lifeguard on duty.
This year has shown us that our organization is resilient. I am proud as the Accounting Officer to say that Sharks Board has emerged stronger and remains even more committed to serving our KZN communities at a time when the need is most.
The KZN Sharks Board was able to fund food banks and opened a serving food station to the community affected by flooding in Isipingo.
Immediately after our beach clean-up campaign, we set up a food serving station for the community that resides in the surrounding area of the beach we were cleaning. The community members had spent the day at the public pool area collecting water from the pool as so they could do their laundry. It is mainly children and women that have been mostly affected.
In compliance with Sharks Board Values “Ubuntu” we took the initiative to visit the KwaMashu Family and Child Welfare Society to donate clothes, computers and chairs, we then proceeded to Morka Fitment Centre at where we donated moto vehicle spares and 03 computers to help the newly open business to grow, and that what we call “Ubuntu”.
Sharks Board believes in doing good to others and for that, we shall continue giving back to our society when and where we can.
KZN Sharks Board further visited High School in KwaMashu to donate 10 computers to the pupils as we believe that future is technology and Sharks Board is very pleased to help grow the generation that is familiar with using computers and technological equipped.
2022/3 threw a variety of challenges at us. I am proud that we mastered these challenges, launched a compelling new strategy as our recovery plan, and delivered strong financial results.
My heartfelt thanks go out to all our employees. They are the ones that serve and delight our people every single day by creating safe bathing environment while minimizing environmental impact, selling our edutainment products, conduct and facilitates various scientific activities, which include monitoring, documenting and dissecting all catches, collecting biological samples, investigating shark incidents and investigating new non-lethal alternatives to the current shark safety gear our staff members also provides technical and scientific knowledge that is passed on to the community both locally and internationally.
They are the ones that show incredible commitment, passion, and resilience in times of continued uncertainty. I am extremely proud to be part of this winning team. Together, we are The KZN SHARKS BOARD – the only organization of its kind in the world.
Acting Chief Executive Office