Why we postponed closed season for fishing - John Boadu
The General Secretary of the ruling New Patriotic (NPP) party, John Boadu says government decided to postpone the implementation of the closed season for fishing as a result of lack of broader engagement with stakeholders
The Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Elizabeth Naa Afoley Quaye on Friday announced in a meeting with stakeholders in the fisheries industry that Cabinet has decided to postpone the one month ban on fishing activities.
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The ban, which would have taken effect from August 7 to September 4, will now be implemented in 2019, the minister said.
She added that the government decided to postpone the ban following concerns expressed by players in the industry.
Although August has been touted as the bumper season, the same period has been described as the perfect time for high food production for fish.
An estimated 13,000 artisanal canoes, 80 Ghanaian flagged trawlers 300 semi-industrial boats are said to be on Ghana’s waters. Although fishing is very high, the catch has been extremely low.
For many years, there has not been any closed season and that according to some experts, was contributing to the dwindling stock of fish in the sea.
When announced that it was going to implement the closed season this year, whilst some applauded the move, others objected and said there was not enough consultation.
Speaking at a thanksgiving service in Cape Coast to mark the 71st anniversary of the formation of the United Gold Coast Convention (UGCC), Boadu said although the closed season for fishing was good, its implementation generated tension within the fishing stakeholders due to lapses in communication.
When the government announced the closed season, some fishermen threatened to disregard the ban, accusing the government of not consulting them as stated in the laws.
But the government says the ban was intended to help replenish the diminishing fish stock in the country’s seas.
The current NPP is believed to have originated from the UGCC, the first political movement in the then Gold Coast.