Give us alternative Livelihood or forget about One Month Ban on Fishing – VR Fishermen

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Members of the Ghana National Canoe Fishermen Council-Southern Volta, has called on the Government to rescind its decision to ban fishing in Ghana for one month as announced.

According to the Group, the decision is wrong and is coming too late for fishermen to comply with, hence their move to “kick against the idea of CLOSE SEASON being forced on us by the present Administration of Ghana which is intended to take effect from 7th August to 4 September 2018”.

At a news conference held at Adina in the Ketu South municipality of the Volta Region, The Volta Regional Chief Fisherman, Seth Abotsi, said, “despite the fact that, CLOSE SEASON is observed in many countries and yielded fruitful results, we the fisher folks in Ghana particularly the Southern Volta are objecting to it on the following grounds or reasons:

“The Government’s failure in anyway of identifying, and stopping the actual cause of the depletion of marine industry such as Light Fishing, use of monofilament net, use of small mesh net called “Poly“ for fishing, use of dangerous chemicals, to mention just a few”.

He said the disregard and disrespect to the fisher folks who complain mostly about MIGRANT trawling vessels who always catch and throw unwanted fish back into the sea just to dye and waste also scared the living ones away into the deep sea.

He said the government has failed to give an alternative livelihood to keep the fisher folks and their children alive during the period of the CLOSE SEASON.

Abotsi claimed that, the Council knows better how the sea operates than some politicians. He called on the government to consult they the fishermen whenever they want to ‘fight’ for them, stating that “we want to make ourselves very clear to the politicians in Ghana that we use the sea water to wash our face every morning and for that reason we study the practice which is good or bad to be used at sea as well as the Keta lagoon that washes the coast of The Southern Volta”.

He said if the current administration wants to claim credit for managing and stop galamsey successfully, “why not use the same method or mechanism to stop those Illegal fishing practice along our coast?” he asked.

“We want to make ourselves very clear to the Politicians in Ghana that there is not a single or individual fisherman in Southern Volta who is against the CLOSE SEASON, but without any alternative livelihood we cannot allow it today or tomorrow.

“Also, the time frame is too short for us to observe the close season because we are not prepared towards it now”.

Source: Edzorna Mensah

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