By Leilanie G. Adriano
Laoag City,Ilocos Norte, May 29 (PNA) –The Maritime Group(MG) of the Philippine National Police has adopted at least three fish sanctuaries located along the stretch of the 150-kilometer coastline of the province.
Launched on November 2013, the PNP through the MG signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the PNP, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau to support the efforts of various local government units and national government agencies in protecting duly established maritime protected areas in the country.
Of the 11 fish sanctuaries established both in the first and second district of Ilocos Norte, at least three marine protected areas in the coastal municipalities of Currimao, Badoc and Paoay are now adopted under the PNP-MG program, said Police Inspector Rommel Lazaga, head of the PNP Maritime based in Gaang village, Currimao town.
Specifically, these are the fish sanctuaries of Puro Island composed of around 50 hectares in Badoc, 13-hectare Pangil fish sanctuary in Currimao and a 6-hectare fish sanctuary in Culili, Paoay, Ilocos Norte.
Based on the MOU, the national government has established many marine protected areas around the country under the National Integrated Protected Areas System pursuant to Republic Act 7586 or the so-called NIPAS Act of 1992.
Also, the LGUs with coastal areas have established fish sanctuaries through the enactment of local ordinances pursuant to the Fisheries Code of 1998, commonly known as Marine Protected Areas.(PNA)