Fishermen cautioned against use of illegal fishing gears
12 September 2014, 20:59
Homabay - Fishermen from Nyabodi beach in West Karachuonyo, Homabay County have been warned against use of illegal fishing gear.
The chairman of Nyabodi Beach Management Unit (BMU), George Orimba said rising cases of fishermen harvesting fingerlings from Lake Victoria was a concern to the authorities and stakeholders.
Speaking to the press, Orimba warned that those engaging in illegal fishing would soon be rounded up to face the law.
‘There is a worrying trend where fishermen are catching undersize fish and selling them cheaply to hawkers and consumers which is unacceptable”, he said.
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The official singled out Chuowe and Alum beaches as the most affected by the illegal practice which he noted had contributed to dwindling fish stocks in Lake Victoria.
Orimba said boats without registration numbers which are always spotted fishing in breeding zones were the major culprits in the menace.
The chair also appealed to the County Executive Member in charge of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, David Okeyo to accord them the necessary support in their quest for responsible fishing activities.
He urged the county government to procure a surveillance speed boat to assist in clamping down the menace so as to ensure the sustainance of the lake as a means of livelihood to thousands of people whose lives were dependent on the fishing value chain.
Homabay County has 151 landing beaches managed by 133 BMUs with 61 in Mbita, 33 in Suba, 30 in Rachuonyo North and four in Homa Bay.
Last year, 76,710 tonnes of fish worth KES 7 billion were captured. Of these, nile perch contributed KES 5 billion and Clarias (Omena) contributed KES 1.7 billion.
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