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Ban PairTrawling – Fishermen Plead   
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Some fishermen in the six coastal districts of the Western Region have appealed to the Minister-designate for Fisheries, Elizabeth Afoley Quaye, to help ensure the total ban of pair-trawling in Ghana’s territorial waters.

According to the fishermen, the pair-trawling, which had depleted Ghana’s marine stocks, persists partly because successive governments did not have the courage to ban the practice.

The fishermen asserted that successive governments only paid lip service to tackling the menace.

They believed strongly that banning of the practice of pair-trawling in the country’s territorial waters would help revamp the fishing industry.

They have, therefore, called on the current government to muster the courage to ban pair-trawling in the country’s waters.

“If that is not done, the marine stocks would be depleted, but we must protect it for future generations,” they indicated.

This came to light when DAILY GUIDE visited the Half-Assini beach yesterday and interacted with some of the fishermen, most of whom had traveled from the various coastal areas in the region to the Jomoro District to ply their trade.

They maintained that the total ban of pair-trawling would save the fishing industry from collapse.

One of the fishermen, John Amissah, indicated that the Fisheries Management Committee established by the previous Kufuor administration to oversee fishing activities in the country should be restored.

He explained that Fisheries Management Committee ensured that issues related to premix fuel and outboard motors were managed directly by fishermen.

Mr Amissah revealed that the distribution of premix fuel, which the government had subsidized for fisher folks, had been fraught with a lot of corrupt practices.

He alleged that “some premix committee members who are authorized to sell the commodity deliberately hoard them and sell to fishermen in other fishing communities, thus leading to temporary shortage of the product in the designated landing beach sites.”

He called on the incoming Minister of Fisheries to ensure that the interference by political party executives and activists in the distribution of premix fuel would be a thing of the past.

“Again, the vessel monitoring system that was introduced by ex-President Kufuor to monitor the activities of vessels within Ghana’s territorial waters, beyond certain metres zone, should also be reintroduced,” he opined.

He appealed to the current government to make use of all the equipment brought in by the late Gladys Asmah, Minister for Fisheries under President Kufuor, for the construction of cold stores, which were allegedly abandoned by the immediate-past Mahama administration.

“We are also calling on the NPP government to make good the promise of constructing mini harbours at Axim in the region and other sites, for which drawings were ready but had gathered dust under the previous government.”
Source: Daily Guide

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