John Cummins, M.P.

Delta-Richmond East

News Release


  May 7, 2005


A Japanese-Canadian Fisherman’s View



RICHMOND—“Fishermen are concerned about the welfare of Hiep Thien Ngo, the sixty one year old Vietnamese-Canadian fishermen, now on a hunger strike and want action to resolve this tragedy,” said John Cummins, M.P. (Delta-Richmond East).


“I have received a letter of concern from a Japanese-Canadian fisherman.  It represents the concerns of many fishermen with regard to Mr. Ngo’s health,” Cummins said. 


The letter from the Japanese-Canadian fisherman is a follows:


“I was recently informed by a concerned fisherman that a Vietnamese fisherman feeling frustrated and helpless with the plight of trying to make a living as a commercial fisherman has started a hunger strike.


He is the same individual that earlier last month, burned his van in front of the City Hall in Vancouver in protest.  I went to visit him yesterday to see how he was doing.


He is a 61 year old Vietnamese fisherman with a small build.  He had not eaten in 5 days now and is now showing the toll.  He is living on his boat, the Tracey Ann, in Steveston.  He is protesting the deterioration of fishing opportunities to the commercial fleet in the past 10 years.  He is also upset with the native fishery and its abuse.  He wants change and is committed to the cause.


He told me he is doing this for all Canada.  I have grave concerns about this individual because of his age.  There needs to be some resolution to this crisis.


His frustration is one that all fishermen can relate to.  I am trying to inform as many people as I can about his situation so that each can respond in the appropriate manner.  Kim Nuygen at Canadian Fishing Company has been trying to help resolve the situation.  I know she is very concerned about his health.”


Contact:  John Cummins, M.P.

(613) 992-2957, (cell) (604) 970-0937, (604) 940-8040