By Prossy Nandudu
Experts in the fisheries sector have converged at the Lake Victoria Hotel Entebbe, under Integrated Water resources management aimed at discussing ways of fishing sustainably.
This is because inland fisheries (which are commercial fishing operations that take place in freshwaters) play a vital role in providing quality food to some of the World’s most vulnerable populations in accessible and affordable manger.
FAO estimates that approximately 60 million people work and derive their livelihoods from the inland fisheries value chain, hence ensuring sustainability or continuous fishing as the fish also continues to multiply is fast becoming a challenge.
Unsustainable fishing methods according Fisheries experts include using undersized fishnets that capture immature fish, over fishing, fishing around breeding areas among others which prevents the fish from multiplying.
To address some of the issues that will ensure sustainable fishing, experts from FAO, the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO) and the Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC) have been meeting in Entebbe from the 6th till 8th of December to find solutions.
Apart from identifying common solutions to the challenge, the workshop will also foster effective cooperation between Regional Fisheries Bodies and Basin Management Organizations, promote the development of effective approaches to integrate inland fisheries management into catchment area/basin management, focusing on food security, nutrition, and ecosystem health.
The initiative is also expected to produce a coordination framework for a concerted approach to make inland fisheries management an integrated part of basin management.
Enhanced integrated water resources management will contribute to maximizing economic and social welfare in an equitable manner without compromising the sustainability of vital ecosystems.
Present in the workshop include representatives from Regional Fisheries Bodies, Basin Management Organizations, and FAO officers from the Fisheries and Aquaculture Division, Forestry Division, and Land and Water Division, along with national fishery officers and NGOs representatives.