Ndlambe scoops enviro awards

BLUE FLAG: Nombulelo Booysen-Willy (Director:Community Protection Services); Advocate Rolly Dumezweni (Municipal Manager) and Fanie Fouche (Deputy-Director: Community Protection Services) proudly hold up a Blue Flag and certificates for Ndlambe’s three Blue Flag beaches for the 2022/2023 season namely Kellys Beach (Port Alfred), Kariega Main Beach (Kenton-on-Sea) and Middle Beach (Kenton-on-Sea). Pictures supplied

Three Blue Flag beaches and Greenest Municipality

Ndlambe Municipality has been awarded Blue Flag status for three of its beaches at the annual WESSA Blue Flag Awards ceremony in Plettenberg Bay. The prestigious award comes as Ndlambe was also named the Sarah Baartman District’s  Greenest Municipality.

Of nine Blue Flag beaches in the Eastern Cape, and a total of 51 across South Africa, Ndlambe boasts three. Three are in Kouga municipal area and three in the Nelson Mandela Metro.  

The annual WESSA Blue Flag Awards ceremony hosted by the Bitou municipality and Plett Tourism Association took place at Lookout Beach in Plettenberg Bay on November 3 2022. 

In recognition of their excellence in safety, amenities, cleanliness and environmental standards, 57 Blue Flags will be proudly flown at 51 beaches, 4 marinas and 2 tourism boats across South Africa over the upcoming 2022/23 Blue Flag season. A total of 20 Pilot sites were awarded for this year that will be working towards meeting the minimum requirements for full Blue Flag status. 

In his opening address, Executive Mayor of Bitou, David Swart, said the fact that the Blue Flag is voluntary shows commitment to environmental sustainability from the municipalities that participate in the Blue Flag International programme. 

Ndlambe municipality applied for three beaches to obtain the 2022/2023 Blue Flag International flag earlier this year. Within the Eastern Cape, there are 9 Blue Flag Beaches awarded, 3 in the Ndlambe municipal area, 3 in Kouga municipal area, 3 in Nelson Mandela Metro.

[pullquote]Kelly’s Beach first obtained Blue Flag status during the 2005/2006 season and has for the past 18 consecutive seasons obtained the Blue Flag award.[/pullquote]

“We, as Ndlambe municipality, and the Ndlambe community at large should be very proud of this achievement,” said spokesperson Cecil Mbolekwa.

“Ndlambe’s Blue Flag beaches – Kelly’s Beach, Port Alfred and Kariega Main Beach, Kenton-on-Sea, have never once lost their status. In fact Kelly’s Beach first obtained Blue Flag status during the 2005/2006 season and has for the past 18 consecutive seasons obtained the Blue Flag award. 

“Kariega Main Beach in Kenton-on-Sea obtained its first Blue Flag status in 2009/2010 and for the past 14 consecutive seasons obtained the Blue Flag award. Less than a handful of municipalities in South Africa have such a record of consecutive awards,” Mbolekwa said.

Middle Beach in Kenton-on-Sea, after being a Pilot beach for a few years, had achieved full Blue Flag season for the 2022/2023 season, Mbolekwa said. 

“The new ablution facility at Middle Beach was built after an application was sent to the Department of Tourism to work towards getting full status.”

Lifeguards will be placed on both Kellys and Kariega Main beach from 1 December 2022 to 30 April 2023 and at Middle Beach from 3 December 2022 to 3 January 2023. 

“Regular water samples will be taken and environmental education programmes will be rolled out over the Blue Flag season,” Mbolekwa said. “The Blue Flag programme has led to many seasonal and long-term jobs and has put Ndlambe on the map as a destination of choice in the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

“Ndlambe municipality asks that each and every resident, visitor, business owner, family member and tourist embrace the Ndlambe Blue Flag beaches and promote Ndlambe’s success and help us to maintain the status by adhering to the rules applicable to such beaches.”

The Royal Alfred Marina in Port Alfred also obtained Blue Flag Marina status for the 2022/2023 season, one of only 4 Marinas in South Africa that received the award. The other 3 marinas are Thesen Island, Thesen Harbor Town and the V&A Waterfront. A few years back Royal Alfred Marina became the first Marina in South Africa to obtain Blue Flag Status.

GREEN: Ndlambe is the Sarah Baartman District’s Greenest Municipality for 2022. With the award are (left) Fanie Fouche (Deputy-Director: Community Protection Services) and Advocate Rolly Dumezweni (Municipal Manager).

The news came days after the Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism (DEDEAT) declared Ndlambe the Greenest Municipality in the Sarah Baartman District. The District Municipality has seven local municipalities. As the SBDM winner, Ndlambe will now compete in the province-wide Greenest Municipality Awards.

In September 2022 a delegation visited the participating municipalities. Ndlambe gave a detailed presentation covering waste management clean and green initiatives, budgetary support and equipment, green procurement, climate change and energy recovery, awareness and education, monitoring and enforcement mechanisms, waste minimization and recycling, status of waste disposal facilities, open spaces, recreational and public comfort areas; and the future service standard improvement plan. Thereafter the delegation visited sites throughout Ndlambe for evaluation.

In October 2022 Ndlambe municipality won the Sarah Baartman District Municipality Greenest Municipality Competition. 

“As a municipality and the greater community of Ndlambe we should be very proud of this achievement. Ndlambe will continue to offer a safe and healthy environment for all citizens and visitors,” Mbolekwa said.

At the end of October 2022 Ndlambe was assessed by a DEDEAT and GOGTA delegation as one of six municipalities for the DEDEAT Provincial Greenest Municipal Award Competition.


Blue Flag is a world-renowned ecolabel intended to promote sustainability in the tourism sector, through environmental education, environmental protection and other sustainable development practices. More than 4,500 beaches, marinas and tourism boats are concretely contributing to the sustainable development goals through Blue Flag, which also campaigns against disparity, inequality, unemployment, health threats, and depletion of natural resources, environmental threats, pollution and general environmental degradation.

To achieve Blue Flag status, 33 criteria spanning over four themes of coastal management must be met and maintained: These are water quality, environmental education and information, environmental management, and safety and services.  Each Blue Flag site must conduct several environmental education activities during the year, and practise effective and efficient conservation management.

In South Africa, the Blue Flag programme is managed by WESSA and participating coastal municipalities. In the Southern Hemisphere, the Blue Flag season runs from 1 December to 31 October. Beaches are required to apply for Blue Flag status each year and the Blue Flag standards are only enforced at the beaches over the participating beach’s stated season, which varies from just two months of the year to the full 12 months. The WESSA Blue Flag Programme is operated under the auspices of the Foundation for Environmental Education and is headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark.

More at www.blueflag.global