The Ghana Maritime Authority (GMA) will soon phase out all substandard boats believed to be a factor to boat accidents along the Volta Lake.
Deputy Director of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation at the GMA, Dr Richard Lartey says the authority will begin the exercise from the first quarter of this year.
All boats should be licensed annually to certify their sea worthiness.
Dr Richard Lartey spoke exclusively to Josephine Antwi- Adjei after a public safety education to fishmongers, boat operators and inland fishermen at Dambai, Kete Krachi and Kpando Torkor.
‘’We are putting in place a comprehensive research programme 2021, where we will do a thorough survey of all canoes to know the required number which are plying the waterways, we know the ones which are licensed.
“This exercise will enable us to have an updated statistics of the numbers plying the lake,” he said.
He stressed all substandard boats or canoes would be eliminated completely from the system.
Dr Richard lartey noted the rate of boat accidents has reduced considerably because of continued sensitization on safety.
He recalled that this year’s Dambai and Mankango tree stumps removal project were successful.
The deputy director led a team of staff from the Public Relations department to undertake this year’s education, clean up exercise and engaged boat operators at Dambai, Kete Krachi and Kpando Torkor.
The team also presented cleaning materials, assorted items to the three communities.
Municipal chief executive of the Krachi East, Patrick Charty Jilima commended the authority for the initiative stressing how the assembly had battled if insanitary conditions especially along the loading bay at the Dambai.
President of National Inland Canoe Fishermen Council, Jacob Kabora Tetteh Ageke was particularly concerned about access to premix fuel which play an integral part of their business.
According to him, about 10,000 people who depend on inland fishing for their livelihood also need support with life jackets.