THE Government is urged to pump in more support to the Aid and Navigation Unit within the Solomon Islands Maritime Safety Administration.
This is necessary as part of its investment in tourism because most tourists are coming into the country by ships.
The Aid and Navigation Unit’s director Patrick Wamahe expressed these sentiments in an interview with the Solomon Star.
He said the recent partnership with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism on a planned cruise boat visit this November at Marau, east Guadalcanal, is one of the fine examples why the government needs to consider supporting his department.
“The passage at Marau is a fine destination for tourism but lacks proper navigational equipment guides,” Mr Wamahe said.
“Currently we are working with the Ministry of Tourism to help put up some navigation tools like beacons and lights inside the Marau passage in preparation for a Cruise Boat from Australia which will said here at the end of this year,” he added.
Mr Wamahe said for any cruise boat to make a visit, the first thing to consider is the safety of the boat especially where the boat will be berth or anchored.
“Because of that, the Ministry of Tourism has to consult us and we have to put up some beacons on that passage to enable safe travelling for the cruise boat and its passengers.
“The government should be aware that when we have substandard secure of navigation, cruse boat agents would have fear to send their ships because they want to avoid wreckage and losses and it is one of the great concerns SIMA has,” he said.
Mr Wamahe said more work needs to be done such as installation of light house and beacons but due to shortage of budget the works are yet to be carried out.
By IAN M.KAUKUI