Damaged fish trawls cleared off Pilong-Pilongan Island

Lyna Mohamad

The Fisheries Department, Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT), in collaboration with local scuba diving company, Poni Divers, conducted a cleaning campaign in the waters of Pilong-Pilongan Island last Thursday.

The campaign was held to commemorate World Oceans Day, marked on June 8.

Poni Divers CEO Muhammad Tahsin Wong bin Abdullah led the team of 15 divers from the Fisheries Department and Poni Divers.

Acting Senior Special Duties Officer Hajah Munah binti Haji Lampoh from the Fisheries Department assisted with the clearing of fish trawls from the barnacle areas. A total of 30 kilogrammes of damaged fish trawls were collected along Pilong-Pilongan waters.

Similar activities were also jointly carried out by the Fisheries Department and Poni Divers in areas between Kuala Tutong and the Porter’s Patch on June 5. Poni Divers is an established diving company providing scuba training to government and corporate agencies, as well as research services on the marine environment.

The United Nations (UN) through its Resolution 63/11, para 171 in 2008, declared June 8 as World Oceans Day beginning 2009.

This year the celebration carried the theme ‘Innovation for a Sustainable Ocean,’ highlighting the ocean’s contribution to the local community and human lives in general.

It also raises awareness on the challenges faced by the international community, especially in preserving the ocean’s capacity to control climate.

The marine ecosystem is exposed to pollution from human activities, including fishing.

Divers clearing the barnacle areas off Pilong-Pilongan Island. PHOTO: FISHERIES DEPARTMENT