Dakar, March 08, 2012—Greenpeace acknowledges efforts by the Senegalese authorities to summon serial offender “Oleg Naydenov” and impose a bail corresponding to the maximum fine of 30 million FCFA, following information submitted by activists who apprehended this vessel on February 24th this year. Greenpeace recommends that this money be used to increase the country’s capacity to combat pirate fishing.
Greenpeace however condemns however the decision to allow this Russian vessel, “Oleg Naydenov” to continue fishing after payment of the bail.
“A full investigation needs to be done into how these vessels were given the authorization to fish in the first place, as it contradicts Senegalese laws. Moreover if the government is serious about addressing overcapacity, pirate vessels should be the first ones to be removed from the water” says Raoul Monsembula, Greenpeace Africa’s Ocean Campaigner.
“We know that “Oleg Naydenov” is a repeat offender : She was reportedly summoned last year for similar offences and caught with their identification covered by Greenpeace ship “Arctic Sunrise” in 2010. “Oleg Naydenov” should not be allowed to resume fishing”, continues Monsembula.
“Food security and livelihoods in West Africa are compromised and this is yet another reason to have the law upheld and this ship put on a black list” continues Monsembula. “The effects of overfishing in Senegalese waters are critical with stocks declining and food security being compromised. West Africa needs to radically change the way it manages its marine resources. As a first step, existing laws should be upheld and all vessels engaged in pirate fishing past or present should be banished from the region’s waters”.
“Greenpeace is calling on West African governments to urgently implement sustainable fisheries policies that allow our oceans and fish stocks to recover whilst providing jobs and food security for present and future generations” concludes Monsembula.