Report ship overloading, says FCCC

Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission. Commission chief executive officer Joel Abraham responds to the Standing Committee on Economic Affairs at Parliament yesterday. Picture: JONA KONATACI

Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission. Commission chief executive officer Joel Abraham. Picture: FT FILE

REPORT any overloading of passengers on inter-island vessels to our office, says Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission chief executive officer Joel Abraham.

He made the comment while making submissions to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Natural Resources this week.

Mr Abraham said while comments and pictures circulated on social media showed people sleeping in the hallways of inter-island vessels, the commission has yet to receive any formal complaint regarding the issue.

He said after seeing the posts on social media, a team from the commission was sent on board a vessel to investigate the matter.

“We are calling on the public to lodge a formal complaint with us if they come across any inter-island vessel overloading passengers. Sometimes the passenger capacity should be 50 people but they load 60 people,” he claimed.

He said the lives of passengers were at risk if inter-island boats were overloaded.

Mr Abraham said their aim was to protect businesses and consumers.

He said efficient and reliable shipping services contributed significantly to increased social and economic activities.

“Domestic shipping services play an important role in linking maritime islands and this is their main mode of transport.”

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