So who will be the next to head the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA)? FFA has 17 member countries and is based in Honiara. The current head, Samoa’s Tanielu Su’a’s term is coming to an end (serving his second three-year term) and the Forum Fisheries Committee will make a decision on who takes over from him when they meet in Tonga on May 18. The name selected by the committee will then go before the fisheries ministerial meeting in July in Tonga for their endorsement. But already, there are speculations amongst those in the fisheries industry and partners on who will head FFA. The word is that this time round, it is the Melanesian’s turn to head the Forum Fisheries Agency.
It is understood they are looking at backing a candidate for the top job. The name of Vanuatu’s director of fisheries Moses Amos Tinapua is understood to have been suggested within the MSG circle and he could get the nod from the MSG nations—Fiji, Solomons, Vanuatu and PNG. But it will be a difficult decision, since there is also another Melanesian candidate shortlisted. But from what Letter from Suva has been told James Movick, currently the Number 2 man at the FFA, has been travelling around the Pacific lobbying member countries to support his bid for the top position.
Movick, from the Federated States of Micronesia and a former head of PIPSO (Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation), has the support of countries of the Northern Pacific and definitely a strong contender for the top position. However, documents obtained by Letter from Suva revealed that 14 candidates had applied for the job, four of those “were deemed ineligible for selection as they did not include a Letter of Endorsement from their FFA home member states. “The remaining 10 candidates were carefully reviewed and scored against the provided selection criteria. Generally, the quality of these candidates was high…each presenting a unique mix of qualifications, experience, skills and knowledge,” said a report by Vanguard International, a human resource and management consultancy firm from Papua New Guinea, hired to undertake the task of shortlisting the candidates.
Out of the 10 candidates, five were shortlisted by the consultancy firm—two from Australia, one each from the Federated States of Micronesia, Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu.
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