LGUs urged to join search for ‘Malinis at Masaganang Karagatan’

ILOILO CITY— Coastal local government units in Western Visayas are urged to join the search for “Malinis at Masaganang Karagatan” (MMK) of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resoruces (BFAR).

MMK, one of the banner programs of President Rodrigo Duterte, aims to recognize outstanding initiatives and contributions of coastal municipalities and cities to sustainable fisheries resource management.

Specifically, it aims to identify coastal municipalities and cities that have exemplary initiatives against illegal fishing and observance of ecosystem-approach to fisheries resource management.

It also aims to document the best practices and strategies of outstanding municipalities and cities,  and promote these for replication of other local government units.

The local government units are urged to join as there are only few participants since the search started last year, said Cris Rale Aaron-Abuan, Fishing Regulations Officer of BFAR-6, in an interview on Tuesday.

The nomination of a local government unit must be done through or by the office of the municipality or city mayor. Duly accomplished nomination forms and documentary requirements shall be submitted to the regional office of BFAR-6 for regional technical evaluation, she added.

Under the criteria for evaluation, Abuan disclosed that the coastal municipality or city should have no illegal fishing cases; there shall be observance of the off-fishing season; declared marine protected areas; clean coastal waters without any garbage or industrial influence flowing to the sea; and effective mangrove protection and rehabilitation program.

Regional winners are entitled to livelihood projects such as fishing gears and paraphernalia, marine engines, municipal banca below three gross tons, post-harvest equipment and utensils, seaweed dryer, among others.

First place will get PHP2 million worth of livelihood projects; second place, PHP1 million; and PHP500,000 for the third place.

Last year’s search was won by San Carlos City, Negros Occidental with Panay Capiz and Nueva Valencia, Guimaras placing second and third place, respectively.

For further details in joining the search, Abuan said that LGUs could inquire from their respective provincial fisheries office. PNA-northboundasia.com