Fisheries Minister calls on fishers to show interest in aquaculture

he Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mrs Hawa Koomson has entreated fishers and those in the value chain to show interest in fish rearing as an alternative to the over-reliance on the sea.

She said the Ministry in collaboration with R and B Farms was training interested applicants in aquaculture, after which the fingerings and the needed resources were funded by the Ministry as a start-up capital for the fisher folks.

‘Please, show interest in this alternative livelihood and that a team from Liberia have come to Ghana to be trained on the concept of how much more we Ghanaians.

‘We need to take advantage of this, and I mean particularly the youth amongst you to create more jobs and kill poverty in our communities,’ she noted.

The Minister was speaking at an engagement with canoe owners, fishermen and chief fishermen on plans concerning the First July to the 31st of July close fishing season for artisanal fishers.

Turning attention to bad practices at sea, the Minister said the pollution
of the ocean with waste and plastics was becoming a major threat aside from the use of illegal, unregulated, and unreported fishing methods employed by some unscrupulous fishers at sea.

She encouraged them to avoid selfish and deadly fishing practices which contributed to the depletion of marine resources.

The Minister said, ‘Don’t allow yourselves to be arrested. Let us comply with all fishing rules, particularly the close season because if for nothing at all, and you are asked to pay even one hundred cedis, there is a cost meanwhile that money could be invested.’

Mrs Koomson said the Moratorium on Canoe still existed but that there was room for replacement should one apply.

She said the Ministry would support them throughout the close season and encouraged all communities to comply with modalities for the distribution of relief items, adding that the Ministry would make available outboard motors in the coming months at cheaper rates to ensure that fishers could purchase them.

The fishers suggested a ba
n of two years for offenders at sea, collaboration with traditional rulers along the coast to ensure sanity on the sea and devices to test the quality of the catch.

Other concerns were the effects of illegal mining on the sea and the need for recycling plants along the beaches.

Source: Ghana News Agency