More than 50 women and men, representing key provincial government departments including (Fisheries, Police, Forestry, Agriculture), traditional leaders, management committee members, rangers and inspectors of various community conservation sites including the national Arnavon Community Marine Park (ACMP) and NGO organizations and practitioners around Isabel Province have gathered last week in Buala for a training led by the Environment and Conservation Division (ECD) of the Ministry of Environment, Climate Change, Disaster Management (MECDM).
The three days training is held at the Provincial Government’s Provincial Assembly in Buala and ended on Thursday, 14th October 2021. The training was organized by ECD in collaboration with the Isabel Provincial Government Environment Office and The Nature Conservancy.
The facilitators at the training were staff from ECD, Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs, Solomon Islands Environmental Law Association (SIELA) and Solomon Islands Rangers Association (SIRA). Additional technical support and advice were also sought from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution and Landowners Advocacy Legal Support Unit of the Public Solicitors Office.
The main objective of the training was to support the participants to understand the enforcement laws and regulations of three key laws administered by ECD – the Environment Act, Wildlife Protection and Management Act and the Protected Areas Act. Other objectives were to ensure that:
This is the second enforcement training of its kind conducted this year by ECD as part of its ongoing efforts to strengthen implementation and regulation of environmental laws in country.
Provincial Secretary of Isabel Provincial Government, Mr John Mark Lokumana officiated the opening program and welcomed all participants to Buala.
“I believe this training workshop is an important one because it will provide participants the information you require to effectively enforce relevant laws of our country in order to better manage the resources within your care for us now to enjoy and those that to come to also see and enjoy,” PS Lokumana said.
“My province is proud to be the host of this important training and I do hope that you take ownership of this opportunity to be better stewards of our natural resources here in the province. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our facilitators from Honiara for the efforts and commitments in prioritizing this training to happen here in Buala,” Lokumana added.
Meanwhile, ECDs Conservation Officer, Mr Geoffrey Mauriasi said this training is important for everyone especially when dealing with the environmental laws of the country that stakeholders must align their works with.
“We all have special and unique role as law enforcement whether you and I are working for the national government, provincial government, NGO partners we all are working for the same course which is to protect the remains of the Garden of Eden,” he said.
Mr Simon Vuto of The Nature Conservancy also delivered remarks as the key conservation NGO partner in the Province.