By: Modou Kanteh
The Minister of Fisheries has imposed administrative fines on nine fishing vessels arrested in April for infringements of the Fisheries Act.
Fisheries Minister Hon. Musa Drammeh, acting under the powers under the Fisheries Act, slammed fines on nine fishing vessels on 23 June 2023, after a consultative committee meeting to examine the nature of the offences committed by the vessels.
In June, Hon. Drammeh approved the consultative committee meeting and the recommendations of the committee were sent to him, which he reviewed the same day and imposed administrative fines as per the Fisheries Act.
The vessels, arrested and fined, were Al Sidrah, Sama Ans El, Alfarouq, Zherui, Majilac 5, Majilac 6, Fengkai 011, Superfly 01 and Superfly 04. The vessels were further issued with warning letters.
Meanwhile, the consultative committee deferred the cases of Superfly 2 and 3, pending the conclusion of an enquiry into their cases on suspicion of pollution.
Al Sidrah, Alfaroug and Sama Ans El as first offenders were each fined D750, 000.00 and issued warning letters. Majilac 5, Majilac 6, Superfly 01 and Superfly 04 were each fined D1m and issued warning letters. A D1.5m fine was imposed on Fengkai 011 while GMD 5,000,000.00 fine was slammed on Zherui.
Minister Drammeh has also sent a letter to the Director of Fisheries for further action to be taken.
According to Section 97, subsections 3 and 4 of the Fisheries Act, any vessel involved in infringement can opt for a court or out-of-court settlement within 30 days. The nine fined companies chose to settle the matter of Court.