Fishermen at the Tema Canoe Basin commence the 2021 close season with resentment and dissatisfaction regarding arrangements.
The one month moratorium on fishing activities commence today July 1, until August 1, 2021.
The maiden close season which was done in 2019 generated lots of furore resulting in a couple of commencement postponements in but was observed eventually. Major among the fishermen's concerns was an arrangement by the sector ministry to support them during the one month duration of inactivity which the ministry noted and promised consider.
The season could not be observed last year due to the coronavirus pandemic emergency.
This year's close seems to have caught the fisher folks unaware due the break last and the negative impact of the COVID-19 malaise. A visit to the basin Wednesday to find out about preparations met majority of the fishermen getting their nets ready to take home, with the women sitting with dejection and annoyance all over their faces.
Nii Adjeieterh Mator, the Ashamang Chief Fisherman speaking to ONE VISION GH. said, the ministry did not make any provision to cushion them for the period as promised after the maiden season. Nii Mator who noted that they did not see any change after observing the first close season in 2019 raised a concern about poaching by the Chinese trawlers.
The Chief Fisherman was unhappy that the Tuna canoes have been given 3 to 4 months to observe the close season while the China trawlers the very people depleting the fish stock in the Ghanaian waters are doing it for only two months.
This to him constitutes unfairness to the artizanal fishermen.
Some fishermen expressed dissatisfaction at government's inability to institute some financial measures to mitigate the fishermen's suffering over the one month period, adding that this will escalate thievery.
The fishmongers also call for the close season to be observed earlier or scrapped since they see no positive effect it.
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