The Nigerian Navy, NN, on Saturday, handed over a fishing trawler, MFV Lady Jessica ll and 13 crew members to the Federal Department of Fisheries in Bayelsa State.
The trawler was arrested on Dec. 11 by the Navy’s Forward Operating Base (FOB) Formoso while trawling within an area reserved for artisanal fishing boats.
It was arrested at a position that was less than five nautical miles from the shore around the Pennington River entrance without operating her Automatic Identification System.
The handing over was held at a brief ceremony at the Forward Operating Base, Egwema, Brass and performed by the Commanding Officer, Capt. Murtala Rogo, represented by the Executive Officer, FOB, Commander Dantani Bukar.
He said the act violated the Sea Fisheries Act of 1992, adding that such acts, among others, would not be tolerated by the Nigerian Navy.
The Commander also said the Nigerian Navy would not tolerate any maritime infractions in the Nigerian waters and the Gulf of Guinea.
”Let me also add that the Nigerian Navy will not relent in its effort to police and enforce maritime laws.
”To this end, I wish to advise all Mariners to be law-abiding as they engage the Nigerian maritime domain for their individual businesses.
”Pertinently, fishing companies and agents must pay particular attention to the instructions in Form B issued to them by the FDF.
”Same must be communicated and understood by the vessel crew to avoid any form of infringement of the state laws therein,” NAN quoted him as saying.