Tui Ba endorses Bulu districts Fisheries Management committee-
Bulu district which is located in the province of Ba in the Western side of Vitilevu, has established their fisheries management committee.
Endorsed by their provincial head the Turaga na Tui Ba, Ratu Filimone Lagivala with support from WWF-Pacific, the Bulu district fisheries management committee includes representatives from the five villages of Sorokoba, Natalacake,Vadravadra, Sasa and Natunuku.
One of the aims of the Bulu fisheries management committee is to ascertain a fisheries management plan for the Vanua o Ba and Tiliva Bukuya qoliqoli, a source of livelihood for many community fishers.
WWF-Pacific Coastal Fisheries officer Laitia Tamata said the leadership from the Turaga na Tui Ba and his people are essential to promoting a high degree of community ownership which is aimed at reducing the impacts of destructive fishing techniques within the Vanua o Ba and Tiliva Bukuya qoliqoli, this he added is expected to strengthen fisheries, ecosystem and community based management.
“It’s always important that we establish at first with our communities, their vision and then make plans to bringing them to reality. A vision and how to get there removes mismanagement,” Tamata said.
“Moving forward the support given to the Vanua o Ba and Tiliva Bukuya community is focused towards advising them on ways they can resolve current issues and then look at developments afterwards,”Tamata added
The Ba Province currently faces continued decline in its fisheries stocks with many of its coastal communities due to threats such as overfishing, lack of effective management, land based pollution and climate change. There is an urgent need for Ba communities to collectively as natural resource owners and custodians to effectively collaborate across coastal districts to reverse threats to coastal fisheries as it is a mainstay for community food security, livelihoods and income
WWF has a long term commitment to support coastal communities in Ba bring about better management of the coastal fisheries resource and natural resources in general. The Ba province also contains within its boundary a significant portion of the Great Sea Reef, the third longest coral barrier reef system in the southern hemisphere, which makes community engagement and support key to better managing the marine environment in the area.