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Macuata Provincial Council issues stern warning

February 29, 2020 4:22 pm

Suspension proposals have been forwarded to the Macuata Provincial Council.

These proposals call for the suspension and subsequent cancellation of the business license of companies buying beche-de-mer and other banned marine species in Macuata.

The issue was raised during the Macuata Provincial Council meeting yesterday following concerns that some local divers are being used and paid by such companies to dive for the banned marine species.

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Udu District Representative Aisake Galodamu told the meeting, while there should be strict penalties against those diving, more harsh penalties should be dished out to those encouraging the practice.

Tui Macuata Ratu Wiliame Katonivere says while they are protecting their fishing grounds, there are people out there who have no respect at all for it and continue to go against the ban.

A strong advocate for marine conservation, the Tui Macuata says its time authorities come down really hard on these culprits and give them penalties that will deter them.

Without mincing his words, Ratu Wiliame says they treasure their fishing grounds but if this continues, they want the perpetrators to get out of Macuata.

Fisheries Officer Northern Epeli Tawake says they have charged several individuals and are currently investigating others and a company director for the harvesting and sale of the banned marine species.

He says they have strengthened their monitoring of the fishing grounds as they now have the Fiji Navy helping them.

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