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Fishermen in Kitagwenda Want Ban on Issuance of Fishing Licenses Lifted

In September, Ismail Mushemeza, the Kitagwenda District LCV Chairperson stopped the licensing of fishing boats at Nyakera landing site following complaints from some fishermen who were accusing the District Fisheries Officer, Evelyn Atuhaire of illegally licensing boats of non-residents.
28 Jan 2022 15:44
Fishermen at Nyakera landing site Lake George Kamwenge district_

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A section of fishermen at Nyakera landing site on Lake George in Bukurungo town council, Kitagwenda District have asked the authorities to lift the ban on issuance of fishing licenses at the landing site.

In September, Ismail Mushemeza, the Kitagwenda District LCV Chairperson stopped the licensing of fishing boats at Nyakera landing site following complaints from some fishermen who were accusing the District Fisheries Officer, Evelyn Atuhaire of illegally licensing boats of non-residents.

They also accused Atuhaire of fraudulently owning several fishing boats, which creates unfair competition for the fishermen. 

Fishermen also accused the district fisheries officer of owning a number of licensed fishing boats in a proxy manner, which they claimed, had brought about unfair competition in business a matter fishermen protested.

The fishermen have asked the district authorities to pronounce themselves on the continued closure of the fishing activities on the lake and when licensing will resume on the lake.

Paul Balirora one of the affected fishermen says that the district authorities have maintained silence on the matter in spite of having promised to solve the matter before the end of last year.

Balirora says his children are likely to drop out of school since his only source of income, which is fishing, has failed to resume. 

 //Cue in: “Tuli hakubonabona…

Cue out: Nitusasa munonga”//

Boniface Beyanga another fisherman says the continued closure of fishing activities at the landing site has worsened their livelihood. He says that they cannot provide for their families after the only economic activity remains closed.

// Cue in: Yayemereza amaato… Cue out; sente tiziibuziire”//

Ismail Balikizaoha says the district should immediately release licenses-for fishing activities on the lake to enable fishermen to resume their business. This he says will enable them to recover from the covid-19 pandemic.

David Lubuka the Kitagwenda, the Chief Administrative Officer says that the matter will be discussed before the end of January 2021.

He urged the fishermen to remain calm for licensing activity is likely to commence before the end of January.

Nyakera landing site was officially legalized by the government in March 2021 and started with only 20 licensed fishing boats. Fishermen were assured that the number of licensed boats was to increase due to an increase in the number of people engaged in the activity.

However, the joy of anglers short-lived after the exercise of issuance of fishing licenses was halted. 

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