Poaching persists in Macuata

January 17, 2024 6:42 am

After numerous attempts to combat poaching in the province of Macuata, the issue has persisted and escalated over the years.

Kia Island’s Fish Warden, Kemueli Lautiki, claims that the laxity within the authorities has encouraged individuals to illegally fish in the area.

Lautiki believes that poachers have been able to defeat the purpose of fishing-ground custodians due to a lack of enforcement.

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“We can apprehend poachers, but they tend to outsmart us nowadays. So… they would sleep during the day and fish at night; they would rest during fine weather and be active during bad weather. This is a challenge faced by fish wardens nowadays.”

Lautiki says they have been bestowed with the authority to monitor the situation, but they do not even have the necessary resources to execute their duties.

“We are even trying to provide for ourselves, especially for us, as we are still trying to reel from the shock left by Tropical Cyclone Yasa. We were badly affected. We are still trying to rebuild our lives, and then we are faced with another challenge.”

The Fish Warden says the issue undermines efforts to preserve and conserve their marine resources, which will eventually impact the only source of livelihood for the majority of their people.

The Province of Macuata pleads with the authorities for immediate action, considering the devastation caused by the ongoing issue of poaching.

It has left them troubled as they think about the sustenance of their people.