The Fisheries Division of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries conducted a review of community-based Fisheries Management programme with two consultations in Upolu and Savai’i this week.
The consultations were designed to advise the villages through their representatives on the objectives and activities of the independent review.
A.C.E.O of Fisheries, Vaaaoao Joyce Samuelu-Ah Leong, said the programme was initiated under the Australian funded Fisheries Extension and Training Project in 1995.
“There are now 106 village communities participating from all three Islands, Upolu, Savai’i and Manono,” she said.
“The programme involves working with village communities to analyse fishing practices, problems and suggest possible solutions as well as convincing village communities that since they are resource users, they should also have the primary responsibility of managing their marine environment and its resources.”
The review will assess activities implemented under the programme, including the effectiveness of their village fisheries management plan, village by-laws, village-owned fish reserves, village undertakings and the support provided by the government.
“We will also look at the current tools that are being utilized by the programme, how effective and ineffective they are.”
Village bylaws and their impact on the project are also under scrutiny.
“We are looking at the support services from the fisheries division like the monitoring component and there’s also aqua cultural development, agriculture support and there are other fisheries systems that we have developed and assist the community with.
“So it’s looking at all components of the programme.”
Vaaaoao said the goal of the review is to come up with a programme that is more adaptive to the needs of today.