Sunday, May 02, 2010

Ligitan Island To Be Gazetted Separately As Protected Park

SEMPORNA -- Ligitan Island, off here, will be gazetted as a protected park in a separate process as it involves a vast area and located far from Sipadan, the world-renowned diving spot which was gazetted as a protected park last year.

Sabah Parks director Paul Basintal said the process would provide for a better management of the island upon its gazettement.

He said Ligitan Island, about an hour of boat ride from Sipadan Island, had its own unique features including a massive stretch of coral reef measuring 20km in length.

"Due to these features there is a need to gazette the island separately. We are ready to manage the island," he told reporters here following a fact-finding mission to the island on Thursday.

Also in the group were researchers from Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Universiti Malaysia Terengganu, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Fisheries Department and Mineral and Geoscience Department.

The mission was a side programme in conjunction with the five-day Sipadan Island Park scientific expedition which ended on Friday.

Initial finding revealed damages to the coral reef due to destructive fishing methods such as the use of explosives.

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