Poaching in resort lagoon

pirates of the maldives...?

Poaching or rather fishing very close to the house reef of a resort property is a contentious issue which is dealt with differently in different resorts. There appears to be no law or regulation on this issue except the resort can chase away the poachers with their high speed boats powered with outboard engines, given that the resort is aware that its a problem in the first place. With the ever great need for guests for absolute privacy, rooms built on the ocean side of the island maybe the ideal private rooms which is all but open to the ocean giving panoramic views. There are many resorts built with this format and the room types and constituency of beach houses and ocean houses are determined by the geology of the island. Such ocean houses offer good privacy on the land side but is bare on the other side which is especially bad if the ocean side is on an established route of sea traffic.

Tourism and Fisheries are in totally opposite sides of the interests table such as the gun and peace lobby of USA. Tourism here in our country relies on presenting the beauty of nature, natural fauna and flora to guests while fisheries is about taking out these very same resources from nature and present it to hungry mouths elsewhere to be eaten! Its also quite difficult to debate on the merits and demerits of the situation as both sectors can wreck the high ground other will claim on variety of issues and all sorts of emotive genies will escape the bottle as the debate continues.

The best way to deal about this problem with lack of judicial protection would be for resorts to adopt the corporate social responsibility thing to a little more practical level. This could be done by showing the neighbouring villagers the positive side of having a rich neighbour as a resort and how important it is to keep relationship amicable. An annual photo-shoot with island kids and resort executives “island cleaning” will simply not do the magic nowadays. There are some resorts who have successfully done this “catching up with neighbours” such as Naide which recently opened up a small training facility in their resort to recruit apprentices from neighbouring islands.

Ultimately the source of these social problems of the country stems from unemployment which makes an already hopeless people do reckless things which in turn comes to affect the main bread earner (tourism) of the country.


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