NFA staff secures top post in SI

The National,Monday June 20th, 2016

A MAN’S passion for his job as an observer with the National Fisheries Authority when he was 19 has now landed him a post in the Solomon Islands.
Philip Lens from East Sepik, grew up and lived at Kanudi, a few minutes’ drive out from Port Moresby’s central business district.
He recalled being paid K17.06 per day compared to what observers in PNG were paid now – K230 daily.
Life was tough for Lens as he recalls having to juggle work and study.
But that did not stop him from achieving some of his plans and graduating with double degrees, under NFA’s sponsorship.
Lens recently left the authority and moved to Honiara to become the manager of the observers programme with the Fisheries Forum Agencies.
“My life as an observer was not an easy one.
“I started as an observer and I was paid K17.06, I cannot forget that rate.
“But I took the challenge, I did not back down.
“I was suspended twice but thanks to the former and current managing directors of National Fisheries Authority, they believed in me and didn’t terminate me.
“They believed that I had some values in me that I can use to contribute to the organisation.”
After Lens completed his study at the University of Papua New Guinea, he became a compliance officer with the National Fisheries Authority in 2007.
“I was sent out on patrols. On one occasion, we apprehended 10 illegal boats poaching into PNG waters in Western,” he said.
“We used a prawn trawler to catch them. It wasn’t easy, when we were towing those boats back to Port Moresby, the rope broke three times.
“After leaving compliance, I became an observer officer in 2008. That’s where I saw the need to restructure the programme (observer).
“I pushed a proposal which got approved. Now we have 13 permanent staff.”
Speaking at a farewell ceremony to mark his departure, Lens said: “Without NFA I would not get a job. I travelled, I worked, I have a family to look after and I am doing my studies as well.
“I did two degrees in one year. Because of NFA’s investment, the region recognised me.”

One thought on “NFA staff secures top post in SI

  • Please could send me application form for 2021 to apply to be an observer. Is the course still offered at NFA Kavieng? If it is then, please email via this email :[email protected] com

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