May 18, 2017 (Koror, Palau) The clash over Jellyfish Lake continues between Koror State elected and traditional leaders. Currently the issue is being fought over in courts and through correspondence.
Upon lifting of the Temporary Restraining Order against the Koror House of Traditional Leaders by the court on May 2, HOTL with assistance of members of the Ngarametal (traditional enforcers of Koror chiefs) promptly installed their traditional BUL notice at the Jellyfish Lake.
Shortly after the installation of the sign, Koror State Rangers under the instruction of the State Governor Yositaka Adachi, had it removed.
“The sign was not authorized by me or by the Department of Conservation and Law Enforcement and the sign also impeded the view of the Koror State law enforcement officers stations at the lake to register visitors…and violates Koror State Zoning laws,” declared Governor Adachi in his letter to Chief Ibedul and the HOTL.
Furthermore, Adachi expressed his objection to Roman Yano instructing KSG rangers to support the Chiefs “Bul”.
In a letter to HOTL, Governor Adachi advises the chiefs that Koror State Rangers were employees of the Koror State Government under the Executive Branch and do not work for or serve under the direction of the House of Traditional Leaders or any traditional man’s group.
Koror State House Traditional Leaders to Governor Adachi asserts that the Jellyfish Lake is closed under the traditional moratorium “Bul” and no one is allowed there except rangers, staff of MNRET monitoring, Coral Reef Research Foundation and International Coral Reef Center.
They further request that Governor Adachi provide them detail revenue report and breakdown in number of visitors to the lake from 2011 to may 3, 2017 within 10 days.
Meanwhile, the national government through the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Tourism Minister Umiich Sengebau released an official statement yesterday, expressing their recommendation for closure of the lake to remove additional stress on the site which is part of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Site.
Calling for unified position, for full support and cooperation of all parties concerned to “ensure the health and improved condition of the unique biodiversity found in the Jellyfish Lake, Minister Sengebau also reiterated that the national law enforcement will maintain peace and order to extent allowable by law. [/restrict]