By Mike Puia
NORO Township in the Western province came alive on Friday and Saturday when the country’s tuna town celebrated this year’s World Tuna Day.
This is the seventh year Noro has hosted activities to mark world tuna day. The theme of this year’s event was “smart tuna, smart ocean”.
Government officials and other important dignitaries from Honiara including Soltuna staff also witness the event. Minister for Fisheries and Marine Resources, John Maneniaru, delivered the event’s keynote address.
The two days event started with a float and a colourful parade. Workers at Noro’s cannery and National Fisheries Development (NFD) fishing fleets as well as students from schools in and around Noro joined the parade.
Despite wet weather during day one of the event, it does not disperse hundreds that turn up to witness the event. There were activities like a dish competition, queen show and a speech contest held during the celebration. Corporate stalls and group and food stalls were also set up in the Noro playing field.
Maneniaru said everyone that involved in the fishing sector need to act smart to get maximum benefits from tuna and the ocean. He said team work is key.
He said tuna presents opportunities ahead since logging is phasing out.
He thanked workers in the Noro cannery and NFD’s fishing fleets for making Noro cannery operate well which benefited the social and economic development of the province and country.
Maneniaru said tuna has created jobs, create education and economic opportunities for locals.
NFD’s General Manager, Frank Wickham, said the colourful parade is a powerful expression of the multiplier benefits tuna offered to this country.
Wickham said besides creating jobs, business opportunities and contributing to national income, tuna unites the country’s diverse culture.
He said the theme of the event is a reminder for those in the industry to be smart in managing tuna and the ocean to ensure sustainability.