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PIA Press Release
2010/06/02

BFAR steps up drive vs illegal fishing

Dipolog City (2 June) -- To assit Zamboanga del Norte in its bid to get rid of all forms of illegal fishing all over the province, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) recently announced that it would provide the administration of Governor rolando E. Yebes with 28-footer speedboat.

This was disclosed by Provincial Attorney Jes Gal. Sarmiento after his meeting with BFAR Regional Director Virgilio Alforque recently.

It was reported that Governor Yebes recently wrote BFAR National Director Malcolm Sarmiento Jr., requesting for patrol boat to aid the provincial government in its campaign against illegal fishing. The governor said that this problem of illegal fishing already affected small fishermen especially with the entry of big-time commercial fishing vessels in the municipal waters of the province.

During the most recent Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) meeting, the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philkippine Army (PA) have made their pledge to help the provincial government in fighting illegal fishing but they need additional boats to do so.

Provincial police director Atty. Cristeto Rey Gonzalodo, disclosed that they usually tap private boats during their patrols but a few boat owners are hesitant to lend their boats for fear of retaliation by illegal fishing operators.

With the new speedboat in tow, Sarmiento said Zamboanga del Norte?s campaign versus illegal fishing will "finally get a much-needed boost."

Moreover, with BFAR having no power in coastal water, the BFAR chief called upon all municipal mayors to come up with resolutions to authorize BFAR to get inside their municipal waters so it can help curb illegal fishing.

In a related development, Dipolog Mayor Evelyn T. Uy has received a pump boat from BFAR Region IX Director Virgilio Alforque recently. The pump boat will be used in patrolling the municipal waters.

Communication and Report Officer Alex Maaliw of the Food and Agriculture Office (FAO) in Manila together with Engr. Joseph Florig, BFAR provincial chief and City Agriculturist Dionesio Mandawe witnessed the turnover of said equipment. (PF/PIA-ZN) [top]

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