Govt to make order to manage ships entering country
By EDDIE OSIFELO
THE Government is expected to soon impose an order to stop crews in international vessels from stepping on land.
This follows serious concerns raised by the peoples of Rennell Island and Choiseul province on bulk carrier and logging ships travelling to their islands despite the threat of covid-19.
The people asked government to stop any ship from overseas entering the country because of the high risk of spreading the virus.
Attorney General John Muria Junior told a 4th Talk Back show at SIBC on Sunday 26th April that there are Standard Operation Procedures (SOP) being developed and a regulation drafted to oversee movement of crewmen and women from incoming vessels.
Failure to comply will result in SBD1 million fine or 20 years imprisonment which the shipping liners and agents here in Honiara will be held responsible.
Acting Secretary to the Prime Minister, Dr Jimmy Rodgers said that an order is in process to manage the ships entering the country.
Mr Rodgers said the order is to make sure the crews and shipping agents comply with the State of Emergency rules otherwise they can face consequences for breaking it.
However, he said the government also is trying to collect revenue to sustain the domestic economy.
Therefore, Rodgers said the communities must work together with the government to report any ship that breaks the law.
In addition, Muria Jnr explained the 14-day quarantine period covering vessels entering the country.
Muria said the 14-day quarantine period starts when the ship leaves its first port and arrives at the final destination in Solomon Islands.
He said if the ship only covers 10 days, then it must be quarantine for another four days to meet the requirement.