In its new open statement Vanuatu Opposition “voices its utter dissatisfaction against the Salwai led Government for bowing against pressure in allowing the offloading of CCECC machinery and equipment” from the Chinese vessel that Quarantine officials have declared as contaminated equipment.
According to the Opposition, these machines and equipment have come into contact with presumed contaminated gravel on board the said vessel which has the potential to harbor the foot and mouth disease virus. Against concerns from quarantine officials and cattle growers, Government officials brushed aside all apprehensions and offloaded all goods, transporting them to the airport work site.
“Agriculture is a key industry to the livelihood of hundreds of farmers in Vanuatu. To simply break regulations and offload goods with the potential of contaminating our soil with foot and mouth disease virus is a blatant slap in the face to the agriculture sector. Should the virus gain entry into Vanuatu, overnight it is goodbye to the livestock industry and goodbye Vanuatu Beef,” the Opposition claims.
“We are a sovereign nation and we cannot allow foreigners to come in and manipulate systems and safeguards in place which may seriously jeopardise and expose our country to external and extraneous diseases with the potential of wiping out our livestock and livelihood of hundreds of rural farmers.”
The Opposition is demanding that the people who broke quarantine laws and exposed Vanuatu to a potential killer virus must be held accountable and must face the full force of the law.