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Koya refutes claim

Luke Nacei
Friday, March 09, 2018

IT is inaccurate, irresponsible and mischievous to say that Government permits the removal and destruction of large areas of mangroves, says Minister for Lands and Mineral Resources, Faiyaz Koya.

He made the statement while responding to a question by leader of the Opposition Ro Teimumu Kepa during yesterday's Parliament sitting.

Ro Teimumu had questioned why Government permitted the removal and destruction of large areas of mangroves, negatively impacting the country's ecological diversity and contributing directly to climate change issues.

"The Ministry of Lands and Mineral Resources is the lead agency in co-ordinating a mangrove management committee which collates and discusses issues relating to the sustainable management of our mangrove forests," Mr Koya said.

"Let me now educate the member that even though my ministry is responsible for the issuance of foreshore leases, collectively there are three ministries involved on the issue of mangroves.

"Forestry on the licensing of mangrove harvesting for commercial use while the Ministry of Environment provides the Environment Impact Assessment for developments.

Mr Koya also highlighted the issuance of a foreshore lease has a total area of 208.4129 hectares or 514.981 acres of standing mangroves.

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