NEWS

Illegal Fishermen Threaten Fish Wardens with Spearguns

Fish wardens from Mali Island in Macuata are being threatened with spearguns by armed illegal fishermen. Macuata Provincial Council tikina (district) representative Seru Moce, confirmed yesterday that the illegal fishermen
04 Oct 2017 11:00
Illegal Fishermen Threaten Fish Wardens with Spearguns

Fish wardens from Mali Island in Macuata are being threatened with spearguns by armed illegal fishermen.

Macuata Provincial Council tikina (district) representative Seru Moce, confirmed yesterday that the illegal fishermen were caught fishing within their traditional fishing grounds last month.

“Our fish wardens are voluntarily policing our fishing grounds,” Mr Moce said.

“When the fish wardens questioned the illegal fishermen, the intruders threatened them with their spearguns,” he said.

Fish wardens have their Fish Warden Identity cards as their identification.

He said that he had reported the matter to the Police and the Ministry of Fisheries but they have both not responded.

“These illegal fishermen were fishing within our traditional fishing ground. They are after the sea cucumbers and other fish species.

“We know for a fact that these illegal fishermen are working for some people, as when the fish wardens confronted a group that group contacts the others and they teamed up against the fish wardens with their spearguns.”

Fiji Police chief operations officer Acting Commissioner for Police Rusiate Tudravu said yesterday that he would contact the Commanding Officer Northern to confirm if the matter had been reported.

ACP Tudravu said this was serious especially when the lives of appointed fish wardens with identification cards have been threatened.

He added that Police would look into the matter.

Mali is one of the 12 districts in the province of Macuata. The district of Mali includes the villages of Nakawaqa, Ligaulevu, Matailabasa and Vesi.

Edited by Karalaini Waqanidrola

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