Cedric and Ornella bought flowers and fruit at the Port Vila market. Under Photos, theres a new page "Flowers" showing the development of the flower arranagement.
Owners of troubled-plagued Phocea to sue Vanuatu
Updated 16 May 2013, 9:22 AEST
The luxury yacht, Phocea, the centre of a major political controversy in
Vanuatu, has been forced to return to Noumea after its main generator broke down.
Click HERE to here Guy Benard talking about it
Owners of troubled-plagued Phocea to sue
Vanuatu (Credit: ABC)
The yacht was sailing to Phuket in Thailand to under go extensive repairs
after its 10 months detention in Port Vila.
Agent for the Phocea, Captain Guy Benard says the yacht's owners are planning to sue the Vanuatu government over damage to Phocea.
Presenter: Hilaire Bule
Speaker: Captain Guy Benard, Noumea agent for the
luxury yacht, Phocea.
Phocea finally leaves Port Vila amid questions over boat’s
Posted at 20:14 on 03 May, 2013 UTC
Police and customs officials in New Caledonia are preparing for the arrival
of the superyacht, the Phocea, which left Vanuatu on Thursday after being
detained for nearly ten months.
The vessel, which is currently rented by the controversial Vanuatu honorary
consul Pascal Anh Quan Saken, entered the country’s waters without proper clearance last July.
Police and Customs officials inspected the vessel, suspecting it carried
Although no contraband was found, false documentation for the crew and no legitimate registration for the boat meant the Phocea had been detained by Customs officials until now.
Johnny Blades has more:
Vanuatu Customs officials were this week directed by the new government of Moana Carcasses to release the boat whose links to various politicians played a part in the downfall of the previous government of Sato Kilman.
The clearance was based on registration issued by the New York office of
Vanuatu Maritime Services Limited, echoing two recent failed attempts to grant the boat provisional registration.
Sources within Customs indicate the department is unhappy at being forced to accept the registration.
The former Finance Minister Charlot Salwai, who objected to the previous
registration attempts, says the office which granted the latest registration is just a business and does not represent the authority of Vanuatu.
He says the fact remained that the Phocea entered Vanuatu illegally and
outstanding issues remain.
“In that case we should seize the boat and it should be as simple as that. But how it was dealt with, it was collecting almost everyone inside the story of the Phocea. For me, it looked like our laws are weak and I do understand that some departments like Ports & Marine and Customs are not... would not be really happy.”
A Vanuatu maritime figure who claims to be the Deputy Commissioner of
Maritime Affairs, Captain Guy Benard, has been instrumental in securing the release of the Phocea.
A French journalist who has been following the case of the Phocea, Christophe Gargiulo says Guy Benard has an interesting history.
“You know the guy who did this is very known for his criminal activities in Vanuatu so I wouldn’t give a lot of credit to this (the registration). He pretends he’s a technical advisor at the Vanuatu Maritime Authority but the VMA died a few years ago because there was a conspiracy case initiated by the State Law Office against Guy Benard and other
people involved in it, and there was such a mess on this court case that it was closed. But Guy Benard pretended that there was another little working cell still existing and he’s acting as a technical advisor with this.”
Reports in Vanuatu indicate the Phocea is heading to New Caledonia to be
surveyed by maritime experts.
Christophe Gargiulo says that officials in Noumea are waiting for the
“The French police and the French customs have been following the story since the beginning, and they’re a bit worried about this Saken personality and they are also a bit worried because a few hours ago the Phocea cut its tracking device so they don’t know where it is actually.”
Captain Benard told local media that the management of the Phocea is going to sue Vanuatu authorities who were responsible for the degradation of the condition of the vessel while in detention.
Cedric left this morning on his way to Papeete where he hopes to pick up a position on one of two Oyster 80s on the Oyster World Rally.
Trying to upload photos here at the Nambawan café, but its very slow today. Have to go to immigration to get my receipt for the immigration clearance fee...and when Ornella has her arrangements sorted, to sign her off the crew list. They offered to provide me with a one-way ticket letter..I may not need it, but I'll probably get it anyway.
Quarantine man arrived at 0800 Monday morning...that was easy and quick, next fill up with diesel, water and then customs...by that time it was 1130...too late ...they are at lunch...open at 1pm...go back at 1.30pm only to discover that I have the time wrong. My computer clock says Vanuatu is the same time as New Zealand....but its not...its the same as Noumea. I could have gone to customs before, but now I have to wait. A kind customs man sees me waiting and opens the door...after copious form filling its done. Back to the boat...Ornella has a an interview for a position on a superyacht in Tahiti S.V. Koo (43m Dubois sloop) at 3.30pm at the Nambawan café. She wants to make a good impression, so she's ironing her clothes on the boat !!
Cedric is off looking for some contacts he has in the electricity business and also looking for yachting contacts.
The helicopter was a diversion....interesting...he's there everyday.
Cheers from Port Vila
Ok its decided, May 15 we are leaving Noumea. Ornella turns up to say she will come..great !
Do the round of clearing out ...immigration, easy, customs...not so simple, we still have this problem over the registration ...not deleted from the French registry...but eventually we get the stamp and we're off to the Port Captain..turns out he's a lonely ex-sailor and he muses at length about his sailing days, his brother, spear fishing on the reef....eventually we get away, back to Elyse, pay the marina, fill up with diesel and we're off...but the timing is all wrong for the Canal de la Havannah so we anchor at Ile Ouen in Bay Ire for the night and set off the next morning.
And there was almost no wind, no sea...we motored 54 hours to arrive in Vila at 1230 on Saturday May 18...too late to clear in...have to wait for Monday.
Having looked at the predicted winds and tides, the plan is to clear out of Noumea Wednesday morning, cruise off to Ile Ouen or Baie de Prony and overnight there. Thursday morning head out to le Canal de la Havannah aiming to be in it by 1200...that's slack high water, so go out on the slack/ebb and the wind is predicted to be light so that should avoid the rough sea that can occur there when there's wind and tide... and then basically rhumb line to Port Vila, passing just south of Ile Lifou.
According to the MaxSea routing plan it should take just over 2.5 days.
Today the sun came out, first time since last Sunday !
Last week a young Kiwi chap, Tom, came by and asked about crewing. He needs to get to Australia...sorry, not going there. He kept dropping by every so often to ask if I knew of anyone going to Australia. Then yesterday he turned up with a young French woman, Onella, who may be interested to come to Vanuatu. She came on board and we had a chat, she seems OK, said she would come back and talk further if interested.
It would be better to be 3, then we could have 3 hours on and 6 hours off !! rather than 3 on, 3 off, which is pretty tiring. Anyway we will see.
Went out with friends Jean-Yves and his girlfriend Corrine for the weekend …wind a bit weak to start with on Saturday but got up to 20 knots SE, so hard on, but doing 7.5 knots most of the time…..and then it rained and rained until 2000 on Saturday but we had a good time anyway. Bright and sunny on Sunday but only 5 knots of breeze and from SW, so motored all the way back to Moselle…quite pleasant.
BUT on Sunday the main furler motor wouldn’t go…fixed this am…a stuck brush in the motor…all motors now have had their brushes cleaned and rechecked !
So…on we go…we have a forward looking sonar..and that stopped working too, but it’s the fuse connector…so no big deal their either.
Raining again today !
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