Fisheries Ministry's ban on fishing activities illegal – MP

Edward Bawa, Middle[/caption] Member of Parliament for Bongo, Edward Bawa has criticized the NPP government’s decision, through the Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministry, to illegally ban fishing activities between August and September. Commenting on the issue on TV3 NewDay on Wednesday, the MP said the Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture does not have the mandate to ban fishing, and that only the Fisheries Commission has the power to do so. “The decision is unlawful, it is not based on any scientific research and to a very large extent a decision that is going to render a lot of people miserable for the next 27 days. There has not been any serious scientific research to suggest that it is in August that we have most of the fishes spanning. It has not been proven,” he argued. The Fisheries Ministry has directed that fishing activities be stopped from August 7 to early parts of September. But the Member of Parliament for Bongo said experiences over the years have suggested that it is in August that most fishermen reap their bumper harvest; hence the ban would hinder productivity. “The decision on banning fishing stipulates that the fishermen are not supposed to go to sea, and this suggests that for the 27 days, the fishermen will be without any source of income, and the fishermen are worried.” “We have about 100,000 people, families, fishmongers involved in this venture trickling down to us the consumers. Then it has a cascading effect on the larger population,” he remarked. There have been agitations from fishermen and some well-meaning Ghanaians following the announcement of the ban by the Fisheries Ministry. The Fishermen Association of Ghana embarked on a protest to express their displeasure over the decision, saying it will affect their daily bread, but the ministry remains adamant in seeing the ban through to an end.

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By Steve Lissassi || Ghana  ]]>