Fisheries Minister, Elizabeth Afoley Quaye has told Parliament government is going ahead with the implementation of the closed fishing season next month despite opposition by some groups.

The closed season is intended to allow fish spawn to improve Ghana’s dwindling fish stocks.

This has not been well received by fisherfolk. They say there was no consultation at all before the calendar was introduced.

Some say the month of August is the month for a bumper fish harvest and are wondering why a ban will be placed on fishing during that important month.

The fishermen want the government to shift the closure to 2019, saying the month-long ban in August 2018 will impoverish them.

The Minority in Parliament agree with the fishermen.

But the Fisheries Minister told Parliament on Tuesday that if the closure is not effected, there will be no fishes to catch in future.

“The closure is to ensure sustainable fish food and nutrition security as well as guaranteed income and livelihood of fishers.

“The closure will prevent the huge security crisis that will arise if the artisanal fishing sector collapses. It means mass unemployment, high incidence of poverty and increase social vices,” she said.

The mitigation measure is expected to have its economic, financial and social implications but the Minister says measures have been put in place to control it.

Some of these include alternative livelihood schemes through the collection and processing of plastic for money.

Landing Beach Committees are expected to use some fixed portions of the 53 percent of pre-mixed fuel margins meant for development to all fishers identified within their beach committees.

She says the closed season will begin from August 7 to September 4, Joy News’ Joseph Opoku Gakpo reported from Parliament.

 

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