Saturday, April 13, 2024
Home News Fishers Petition Minister Over Mukene

Fishers Petition Minister Over Mukene

by Wangah Wanyama
0 comment

By Julius Luwemba

Under different associations, fishers mainly from Kalangala district petitioned the minister of state for fisheries Hellen Adoa to retract what they termed as the new confusing directives especially in regards to catching silverfish. During the Thursday meeting at the directorate of fisheries in Entebbe municipality, fishers under their umbrella known as the Federation of Fisheries Organisation Uganda (FFOU) said the fisheries minister had held a meeting with the Fisheries Protection Unit (FPU) and members under the Association of Fishers and Lake Users of Uganda (AFALU) from where she is said to have issued new directives without engaging other associations of fishers.

“It is worth noting that most of the fisheries stakeholders were not notified about that meeting nor its intentions as well as the rationale for the directive passed,” stated Elly Wasajja, one of the members under FFOU, a foundation said to be an umbrella body of 135 associations. The fishers noted that the prior meeting between the minister, FPU and AFALU had allegedly resolved to effect a ban of all fishing methods of silverfish with exception of the scoop net fishing method.

“According to the new directives, fishing of silverfish was restricted to particular days. With the above resolution, we can trace a number of loopholes if we put the resolutions to the current laws at hand,” stated Elijah Ssekkanga, a lawyer who had led the FFOU members. He further noted that the said directives do not specify offences and penalties, making their implementation hard and confusing.

Fishers mainly from Kalangala district petitioned Hellen Adoa, the minister of state for fisheries over what they termed as new fishing directives, at the directorate of fisheries in Entebbe

Another association known as Silver Fishers and Processors Association Uganda also petitioned the minister against the abolition of ‘Hurry-up’ fishing method saying they had not been consulted before the abolition. They also pleaded for water markers to identify fish breeding areas among other spots where fishermen would not be allowed to traverse. These were represented by Lubega Kato, Gerald Kayita, Joshua Munduni, Ruth Mirembe, Olivia Namutosi and Moses Bwire among others.

Meanwhile, minister Adoa welcomed the fishers to her office but denied having passed any new directive in regard to fishing silverfish. In presence of the technical team at the ministry of agriculture animal industry and fisheries, Adoa noted that her announcements that were misinterpreted as being new directives, are already provided for in the Fisheries and Aquaculture Act plus the regulations.

According to Adoa, each licensed fisher is guided on the proper methods and gear to be used. “The fact that most of you came here complaining, indicates you have not renewed your licenses. Otherwise, you would be well aware of what to do and nothing to worry about in case you were doing the right thing,” the minister stated. She however gave the fishers a grace period of up to the end of March to have their fishing licenses renewed as they engage in the legally stipulated fishing methods, using the right gear and at the right time.

Adoa also advised the fishers to register their associations with the agriculture ministry in order to benefit from the government programs. Also present was the former Kalangala district chairperson Willy Lugolobi.

You may also like

Leave a Comment

Download Vision Group Experience App

Follow Us

All Rights Reserved © Harvest Money 2023