Ghana National Canoe Fishermen Council has protested against government’s decision to close the fishing season for the month of August.
At a press conference held in Accra, fishermen and fishmongers from the Volta, Central, and Greater Accra region, demanded that government back down on its decision adding that no consultation was held with them before the ban was introduced.
Chanting and waving their red cloths, the angry fishermen told the Minister for Fisheries, Elizabeth Afoley Quaye, to rethink her decision as the month of August is their season of bumper harvest.
Executive Secretary for the Ghana National Canoe Fishermen Council, Nii Abeo Kyerekuandah IV, suggested that either the ban is moved to the following year 2019 or policy makers should prepare towards providing an alternate source of livelihood for the fisher folks.
He reiterated that the one-month ban on fishing will impoverish them as it is their only means of survival.
“We know that some countries had used close season to successfully manage their fisheries. What we ought to know however is that in these cases, adequate provisions were made to provide affected stakeholders with alternate livelihoods. Some were given jobs and cash to sustain them. They were also intensively and widely consulted but regrettably in our case, the stakeholders virtually side lined us and decisions are being foisted on us. We find this objectionable and unacceptable”. He said.
Government has imposed a one month ban on all fishing activities in the country takes effect from August 7 to September 4, this year to improve Ghana’s fishing stock.
Elizabeth Naa Afoley Quaye, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development announced that the closed season was not going to be a one off process, adding that, it would continue year by year until Ghana’s fishing stock improved.