Illegal Fishing Gear worth UGX 800 Million burnt

2005 Views Buliisa, Uganda

In short
Illegal fishing gears worth 800 million shillings have been set a blaze by fisheries officials in Buliisa district.

Illegal fishing gears worth 800 million shillings have been set a blaze by fisheries officials in Buliisa district. Some of the gears were voluntarily handed over by fishermen, while others were impounded in an operation mounted jointly by police fisheries officials against illegal fishing on Lake Albert. The illegal gear was burnt at three separate sites in an operation over seen by Paul Okware the senior fisheries inspector, directorate of fisheries Entebbe.


Okware commended the fisheries enforcement team on Lake Albert for the job well done. He said despite the fact that such operations are ongoing on the various water bodies in the country; the results are more noticeable on Lake Albert. Okware says alongside such operations the ministry is to begin licensing boats and branding fish nets to make it difficult for fishermen to use illegal fishing gears.
 

Godfrey Mwijakubi, the head of the illegal fishing operation says the illegal gears were got from Butiaba, Wanseko, Walukuba Bugoigo, Songalendu, Kabolwa, Cogolyeki, Sonsio and Katala landing sites. He says that unlike in the past when fishermen were coerced to surrender the illegal fishing gears, many of them are surrendering them voluntarily.
 

He says that apart from a few illegal gears hidden in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Buliisa part of Lake Albert is almost rid of such fishing gears. The operation continues in the neighboring districts of Hoima, Kibaale and Ntoroko.
Mwijakubi says to ensure more surveillance of the water against illegal fishing practices he has appointed an eight member committee on major landing sites in the region to liaise with his team.


In July 2011, Ministry of Fisheries launched an operation on Ugandan waters to rid them of illegal fishing gears to allow fish to breed and improve the fish catch. So far illegal nets worth over 3 billion shillings have been destroyed on Lake Albert since the operation begun. Two months ago State Minister for fisheries Ruth Nankabirwa personally moved to Lake Albert where she presided over the burning of the first batch of the illegal fishing gears.