New Kia watch tower to combat poaching activities

June 12, 2024 12:06 pm

Kia watch tower

The fight towards eradicating illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing activities in Fiji’s waters has allowed the island of Kia, Macuata, to become the first-ever island in Fiji to have a watch tower.

This is part of the ongoing monitoring and surveillance operation by the Ministry of Fisheries, the Fiji Navy, and the Fiji Police over its fishing grounds, including the Fiji Great Sea reef in Vanua Levu.

Minister for Fisheries Kalaveti Ravu, while officiating at the opening of the Kia Watch Tower, says that this is part of a collaboration work by the Ministry of Fisheries and stakeholders, which is to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas, and marine resources for sustainable development.

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“With the establishment of the Kia Watch tower, we anticipate and improve proper recording and reporting consolidation that would support effective surveillance operations and reductions in IUU fishing that would require a multisectoral approach to address this issue of IUU.”

Ravu says that the people of Kia have been affected by the fight to control illegal fishing activities.

The new Kia watch tower will benefit the communities of Ligau, Daku, and Yaro villages, which depend heavily on their fishing grounds and its sustainable initiatives.

Meanwhile, a solar freezer was also handed over to the Kia Fishers cooperative to allow the safe storage of fish before it was taken to Labasa.