A MEMORANDUM of Understanding to pave way for the destruction of the three ‘Vietnamese Blue Boats’ caught fishing illegally in the Solomon waters has been signed on Friday 18th August 2017 between the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources (MFMR) and a local company – Lona Firi Properties Ltd.
Fisheries Director, Edward Honiwala signed on behalf of the Ministry while Wale Tobata for Iona Firi Properties Limited – the company.
Under the terms and conditions of the MOU, the company is required to destroy the boats within four weeks of signing.
Mr Honiwala said the decision to destroy the boats is in line with the High Court’s decision because the boats have failed to pass their sea worthiness examination as confirmed by the Solomon Islands Maritime Safety Administration.
Iona Firi ompany representative, Mr Tobata said they will inform the Ministry of the proposed date for destruction and it will take place in Malaita soon.
The Ministry of Fisheries, Police and other relevant Authorities will witness the destruction of the boats once a date is set.
Iona Firi Properties Ltd will be responsible for the destruction of the boats at no cost to the government.
As agreed, the boats must be destroyed in an environmentally and ecologically friendly manner in line with environmental and International laws Solomon Islands has signed to observe.
Further to that oil, petrol and any other fuel contained in the boats will be removed by Iona Properties Ltd before the boats are destroyed.
The fisheries director explained that any property including the oil, petrol or fuel that were removed prior to the destruction belongs to the state unless and until they are disposed or sold in accordance with the Agreement.
Communications Officer – MFMR