26 January 2017

Uganda: Kasese Fishermen Decry Dwindling Stocks

Kasese — Fishermen in Hamukungu village, Lake Katwe Sub-county in Kasese District have expressed disappointment at what they called government negligence, which they blamed for the dwindling fish stocks.

The concerns were raised by members of the Save Lake George Nyekundiire Task Force on Tuesday led by their chairperson, Mr Yowasi Mugenyi, following an operation that impounded illegal fishing gears and unlicensed boats in their area.

Mr Mugenyi said ever since government scraped fisheries law enforcement officers, the lake has turned into a garbage skip where everybody disposes.

"This lake which used to feed almost all markets in Uganda and DR Congo has been misused by illegal fishing but as concerned citizens we have decided to organise ourselves and make it productive again," Mr Mugenyi noted.

However, he said it is very difficult for residents to carry out any operations on the waters without enforcement officers.

"We appreciate the government for disbanding the task forces because they were just extorting money but we pray that the enforcement team be deployed at the lake," he said.

Issues

Claims.

Recently the district police commander Bwera Police Division, Mr Vincent Mwesigye, noted that some Congolese were crossing to Uganda to fish an issue he said had brought insecurity on the lake because of the two groups fighting.

Blame.

Mr Nelson Mugyenyi, a senior fisherman, said that the government has forgotten its responsibility to save the lake which is an important resource to more than over 12, 000 people who depend on it for survival.

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