Provinces must create small craft boards: Tabar

Provincial Government must establish “Small Craft Boards” to coordinate the “Small Craft Act” in their jurisdictions.

Minister for Transport, Malakai Tabar, said it was the responsibility of each respective Provincial Government to establish the boards to coordinate the Act which regulates small crafts or boats, and the standards for construction, safety, operation and registration of small crafts.

He said this in response to Ijivitari MP, David Arore, who asked about the Transport Departments policy on small craft.

Arore said while by boat from a trip in Northern Province, he came across two capsised dinghies which resulted in a death of a person.

“A lot of them are overloaded with goods; this one had about 15 cement bags so what is the departments policy and like the vehicles and land transport where we have Third Party Insurance and all of that, are our small crafts, the dinghies especially on our coastline insured so that’s my question,” he said.

Minister Tabar said the Act has been in place to ensure the safety of passengers however, it was to Provincial Governments duty to enforce it.

“A lot of the provinces Mr Speaker have not done enough or have not done anything. The provincial governments have a task on their hand just as the registration of vehicles in the respective provinces.

“The provincial governments must effectively have a board and they must be able to help coordinate the small craft act in those provinces,” said Tabar.

In his ensuing response Oro Governor, Gary Juffa, raised a point of order stating that his Provincial Government passed the Act within their Provincial Assembly however where waiting for the National Government to ratify it before the enforce the Act.

Minister Tabar said the ratification is being worked on by the relevant bodies.

Cedric Patjole