The Centre for Coastal Management of the University of Cape Coast has bemoaned the near collapse of the fisheries industry.
According to Director of the Centre, Prof. Denis Worlanyo Aheto, excess capacity across the industrial and artisanal fishing fleets, leading to overfishing is killing the industry.
Despite the fisheries sub sector recording the highest growth rate in the agric sector in the second quarter of this year, the Centre for Coastal Management says the industry is on the verge of collapse.
Prof. Denis Worlanyo Aheto told Joy Business one contributing factor of the struggling industry is with foreign vessels mismanaging Ghana’s fish stock.
“Part of the industry is virtually collapsed. We all do know that marine fisheries particularly at the artisanal scale contribute significantly to national development. Because we do have about 3 million Ghanaians who depend on the fisheries. So over time, we’ve not really put in place adequate measures to sustain the fish stocks. Issues of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing where we’ve allowed foreign vessels unto our oceans to mismanage our stocks to the detriment of local fishers have been an issue,” he noted.
Prof. Aheto further indicated that the lack of a participatory governance framework and inadequate institutional capacity must be fixed to safeguard the fisheries industry.
“The governance framework needs to be strengthened. If you look at the coastal sector is not just the fish, we do have a challenge of pollution, poor sanitation and eroding coastline. And obviously, as a coastal country, we need to be concerned,” he stated.
The Centre for Coastal Management of the University of Cape Coast is set to hold a town hall engagement with political parties on fisheries and coastal management challenges in Ghana on September 22 towards the 2020 national elections.