Duterte told to address monitoring, control of Philippine fishing grounds in 4th SONA
International environmental group Oceana is hoping that President Rodrigo Duterte would make a clear stand on the country’s control and monitoring of our fishing grounds in his fourth State of the Nation Address today (SONA).
“We urge the President to require a very strong monitoring, control and surveillance system for our fishing grounds and waters to fight illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing. With two thirds of our fishing grounds on the verge of collapsing, a no-nonsense enforcement of our Fisheries Code, as amended, is a must,” Gloria Estenzo Ramos, Oceana Vice President, said.
“Likewise, we expect him to include in the priority legislative measures the creation of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources,” she added.
According to her, at the rate the destruction of our fisheries and marine biodiversity is going and with the worsening poverty and hunger among the coastal and fisherfolk communities, Oceana believes that an independent cabinet portfolio, separate from the Department of Agriculture, is urgent.
“Let us help our oceans recover to secure the livelihood of our poor artisanal fisherfolk and the needed protein requirements of Filipinos from our otherwise rich marine resources,” Ramos further said.