The Environmental Justice Foundation is asking the government to adequately engage fisherfolk before implementing this year’s closed season.
According to the non-governmental organisation, giving prior information to the fisherfolk will aid in their preparations to effectively observe the exercise.
Charles Smith, the Communications Officer for the Foundation, told Citi Business News, “The fisherfolk should be told from six months to time so that they are fully aware. Just as we did in 2019 and 2021, same should be done this year. All the measures in the management plan to help our fishes recover will be able to succeed if we end any illegality, so it’s a good call that we end every form of illegality to work towards revive our fisheries resource.”
Every year, the government announces a closed season for marine fishing.
The policy, which commenced in 2019, is in accordance with sections 76(3) and 84 of the Fisheries Act, 2002 (Act 625).
It forms part of the government’s strategies agreed with stakeholders to reduce the excessive pressure and over-exploitation of stocks in the marine subsector, and to help replenish Ghana’s falling marine fish stock.
Ahead of the closed season this year, the Environmental Justice Foundation is asking the government to consult with the fisherfolk to have them involved in the exercise.
Charles Smith further called on government to resource the marine police to effectively monitor fishing activities during the closed season.
“The monitoring, control and surveillance division of the Fisheries Commission who work with the fisheries enforcement unit and the marine police. These groups are to be resourced into order to carry out their activities when it comes to enforcement,” he stated.
“In the past years, these units have mentioned some of the things that they need and in our previous budget readings, we’ve heard government mentioning some specific things that they are going to do for them. So it is important for these promises to be addressed to make sure that they are well resourced with the needed gadgets or equipment to carry out their activities along our coastal belts.”