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   IUU Fishing in Tanzania

Andrew MWANGURA dimanche 28 juin 2009

35 Crew members of FV TAWARIQ-1 and the Mombassa based ship agent of the fishing boat and his friend will on 2nd July, 2009 appear before Dar-es-Salaam court of law charged with fishing without license against section 18(1) of the Tanzania Deep Sea Fishing Authority Act. Cap.388 (R.E.2002) as amended by Act No.4 of 2007 read together with regulation 67 of the Deep Sea Fishing Authority (Regulations) 2009 G.N.48 of 2009.

The first count on the Statement of offence signed by the state Attorney on 4th May 2009 states that on or about March 8th 2009 they were found fishing 296, 32 tones of fishing valued at Tshs 2,074,240,000 without valid license within the EEZ of Tanzania.

The second count states that on or about 8th March 2009 within the EEZ of the United Republic of Tanzania they exploited the resources and captured fishing without there being agreement with the government of the Republic of Tanzania.

Crew of the vessel is composed of 15 Chinese, 5 Vietnamese, 5 Indonesians, 2 Taiwanese, 8 Filipinos and 3 Kenyans. They were intercepted by a South African patrol boat some 180 nautical miles off the Tanzanian coast with over 200 tons of Tuna fish.

The crew members and the ship agent currently detained in Keko and Ukonga prisons in Tanzania are suffering from skin diseases and they are in urgent need of medical attention, supply of toiletry,reading materials and prison visit by the port chaplain.

We would be glad if the Dar-Es-Salaam port chaplain could be allowed to visit the seafarers in prisons.

The vessel was found to have both fresh and frozen tuna and tuna-like species as well as fresh offal and other remains cut from fish on board. The vessel has no flag hoisted ; radar was switched off ; she has no license or permit and port of registry.

Multiple names were found on the vessel ; on the superstructure, lifesaving equipment, and the vessel monitoring system transponder and in documents found at various locations on the vessel. The name No.68 BU YOUNG was found embossed on the port and starboard bows as well as on the stern of the vessel and at the upper part of the wheel house. On the said locations the name TAWARIQ was painted over the name BUYOUNG to mask the embossed name. Information further indicates that the life-rings, the service record of one of the life-rafts and other documents found onboard bore the name of a Korean fishing vessel No.11 INSUNG.

We are informed that TAWARIQ 1 flies Oman flag and her previous name was ODINE MALAGASY her ex-flag sate was Madagscar.It is said that her last port of call was Mombassa port. Without a hoisted flag or port of registry and without any authentic certificate of registration found on board the vessel it is impossible to establish the true identity of the vessel and the owner of the vessel.

Illegal and unregulated fishing takes away huge earnings estimated at 20% of total catch for Kenya and 15% total catch for both Tanzania and Mozambique. In accordance to the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission resolution 06/01 and 09/03 we humble request the Kenyan, Oman and the Korean authorities to help Tanzanian government in identifying the owner of the vessel so that the court case could be brought into conclusion.

Andrew Mwangura
Seafarers’ Assistance Program

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