SIMA launches plan that aims at safety at sea, resilient & clean environment
The newly established Solomon Islands Maritime Authority has launched its Corporate Plan (2020-23) which has been developed as the foundation to achieving its vision of a transformative decade of safety at sea, resilient and clean maritime services and mobility in the country.
Chairman Robert Bokolema writing in the forward states that safety at sea is a paramount both on-board vessels carrying passengers and cargo between the islands and on board small crafts in the communities.
He said: “Whilst safety is the primary responsibilities of ship operators and captain on board merchant ships, safe practice is our individual responsibility when we use our banana boats.”
Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister for SIMA, Manasseh Maelanga in launching the plan said: “I am happy to officiate today and officially launch SIMA Corporate Plan. I have witnessed the last 12-months performance of the SIMA and actions undertaken by the Board and its Director to have the organisation in full power on the 1st of January,” he said.
He underscored that the core of SIMA functions is, Good Maritime Governance which include applying the rule of law and effective and efficient administration, and and adopting principles of transparency, accountability, participation and inclusion.
“These are essential values to observe, if we want the long-waited change in our maritime sector,” he said.
On the otherhand Bokolema said: “Today is a wonderful opportunity to introduce SIMA, launch our Corporate Plan and together look at our vision of a transformative decade of safety at sea, resilient and clean maritime services and mobility in Solomon Islands.”
He said it is also an opportunity to engage the necessary dialogue with all maritime operators to ensure we speak the same language, are engaged together in the same direction and pursuing the same objectives of clean seas, safe sea travels and efficient shipping services.
The Transitional Plan to change from the Solomon Islands Maritime Safety Administration (SIMSA) to Solomon Islands Maritime Authority (SIMA) was introduced following a reform project in 2008 to 2010, however, the reform process was put on hold after the reform program personnel resigned and consequently the Director. In 2013 the idea was again brought up after the appointment of the new director for SIMSA. In 2014 the concept was again brought up by the staff with the Ministry to transit from SIMSA to Solomon Islands Maritime Authority (SIMA). It was a long process which has taken almost 18 years before the SIMA Act was passed by Parliament in 2018.