Diving gear ban from today
The Ministry of Fisheries will ban all Underwater Breathing Apparatus (UBA’s) and harvesting and export of sea cucumber (bech-de-mer) from today. A major cause of concern is the significant number of premature deaths arising from the extensive use of UBA’s in the harvesting of sea cucumber.
Minister for Fisheries, Semi Koroilavesau says that a stand has to be made to protect people’s lives. “During my visits around the country, I found out from members of the communities as well as health officials of the various cases arising from the use of UBA’s. Some have unfortunately passed on whilst many are still bed ridden because of the impact of UBA’s,” said Mr Koroilavesau. “Family members are often burdened with trying to provide proper care for those who are paralysed and this is something that we seriously need to look into because people’s lives are at stake.” “We will also be putting in place a ban on the exemptions of turtles from the 3rd of December till the end of May, 2017 as we are already into their breeding season.