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Three Landing Sites Closed in Nakasongola over Illegal Fishing

The Commander of Fisheries Protection Unit for Nakasongola and Amolatar districts Captain Samuel Ben Ogwang said that they were compelled to close the landing sites after information that fishermen were using illegal fishing gear.
File Photo; Some of fishermen with the recommended boats at Kibuye landing site .
The Fisheries Protection Unit has closed three landing sites in Nakasongola District over renewed illegal fishing activities. The affected landing sites include Zengebe Ferry, Munami and Zengebe Mayinja landing sites on Lake Kyoga.

The Commander of Fisheries Protection Unit for Nakasongola and Amolatar districts Captain Samuel Ben Ogwang said that they were compelled to close the landing sites after information that fishermen were using illegal fishing gear. He adds that they have impounded only 15 out of 100 illegal boats which are believed to be hidden at the landing sites.

However,  captain Ogwang says that the landing sites will be reopened after the fishermen hand over all illegal fishing gear for destruction. But David Nsamba, the Nakasongola District Fisheries Officer said that he was still waiting for an official report about the closed landing sites.

Josephat Mubiru, a fisherman at Munami Landing Site said that they are compelled to use illegal boats because the cost of acquiring the recommended is high. Other fishermen also expressed dissatisfaction that the Fisheries Protection Unit refused to vet them to participate in fishing and left the job to a few businessmen.

Last year, the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries lifted the ban on fishing at Lake Kyoga after a year-long holiday.  But, the fishermen were advised to acquire boats with an interior overall length of twenty-eight feet as a preco9ndition for returning to the lake.

A recommended boat is sold between 1.6 t two million Shillings which the fishermen insist is a prohibitive cost. Several fishermen have failed to raise funds to acquire the recommended boats and resumed fishing activities with illegal fishing boats.

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