Lt Gov: "What you are doing is unnecessary and it is painful and mean"
The Pacific Islands Monument Coalition the Hawaii group behind a nomination to NOAA through the Sanctuary Nomination Process, seeking to designate the Pacific Remote Islands as a national marine sanctuary to permanently and strongly protect an area of unique, diverse marine ecosystems and cultural and historical importance.
However, Lt Governor Talauega Eleasalo Vaalele Ale urged to reconsider their position, citing it will hurt local jobs and the economy during a public hearing on Wednesday at the Tauese P.F. Sunia Ocean Center.
Speaking in his capacity as a resident of American Samoa, Talauega had this to say:
“I oppose it because it does not appear as if there is scientific support for blocking these massive pieces of water that have been relied upon by the perseiner fleet that supplies fish to Starkist, there is no justification.”
Talauega said the proposal has a massive significance on the territory and said if this proposal does not go through, nothing will happen to our brothers and sisters in Hawaii.
However, if it does go through, many people will lose their jobs.
Talauega then turned to the Pacific Remote Islands Coalition: “What you are doing is unnecessary and it is painful and mean because you are not gaining anything extra by this proposition but you are hurting us and cannery workers in this room that live off this land and rely on the fish that is coming from those islands.
“If you really believe that we are your brothers and sisters you have to let this go,” said Lt Governor.