It costs $18,000 a day to keep the Vietnamese robbers
IT’S costing the government $18,000 a day to detain the 43 Vietnamese at Rove Police Club.
A source within the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force told the Solomon Star that our government borne the substantial cost for the operation since last week.
“We roughly estimate that it cost the government $18,000 to house the Vietnamese,” the source, who deals directly with logistical side of the operation, said.
“And that is just for one day,” he added.
“This includes the detainees’ three meals per day.
“You multiply that amount with the number of days they are being kept at the Rove Police Club and you will come up with the overall projected cost,” the source said.
Earlier, Assistant Commissioner of Police Gwen Ratu said government is yet to come up with the cost of housing and keeping the Vietnamese detainees at Rove Police Club.
Although she did not give any figure, Mrs Ratu admitted that such operation will cost the government a huge amount of money.
“At this point of time, we haven’t come up with the estimated cost.
“Certainly overtime, some cost will be put and the government will have some bearing,” Mrs Ratu said.
The fate of the 43 detained Vietnamese “Reef Robbers” and their three blue boats will be dealt with by the Office of the Attorney General.
Under Secretary of National Fisheries Feral Lasi told reporters last week that after the investigations are completed, it will be compiled and submitted to the AG office who will determine the penalty.
“AG office is the body that will deal with the reef robbers accordingly to local laws and international EEZ laws,” Mr Lasi said.
East Honiara Member of Parliament Douglas Ete has told parliament that the government should put to tender the three Vietnamese Blue Boats (VBB’s) to generate revenue for the country.
He stated that the government must not have mercy on those captured in the Vietnamese boats.
He said these people knew that our law enforcement is weak, therefore will continue to enter our waters to fish illegally.
“Those captured appeared to be the same people caught and deported by other Pacific island countries, thus we must not have mercy on them,” Mr Ete said.
He said other countries captured these boats and sell them out for government income, which should be the choice at hand, since our revenue collection is slow to recover at this time.
Mr Ete also urged government not to forgive the Vietnamese onboard the captured blue boats.
“…they will continue to trespass and fish illegally in our Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), if we take things lightly on them,” the East Honiara MP said.
By TEDDY KAFO