Fishermen are sitting idle at landing sites citing low fish catch from Lake Albert.
Hoima, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Several fishermen operating at various landing sites on the shores of Lake Albert are decrying the low fish catch that they are experiencing. The situation became worse since March this year.
Some of the fishermen have attributed the problem to some of their colleagues who use unauthorized nets to catch all sizes of fish including infant ones that are later dumped in the lake.
The fishermen confirmed to Uganda Radio Network that during this time in previous years, they used to have bumper catch but the situation is to the contrary nowadays.
Some of the fishermen have now moored their fishing boats ashore.
Most of the fishermen were seen seated in their boats looking devastated because of the situation.
Charles Atuhura, a fisherman at Kijangi landing site in Buseruka sub county says that fishing sometimes is seasonal especially during the windy season which is normal, but he pointed out that the current situation is far from normal.
Fred Mujuni, a fisherman at Kaiso landing site says at times fishermen from DR Congo invade the Lake Albert waters with undersize fishing nets which according to him catch young fish that are later dumped in the lake, dead.
Gilbert Wanadi, dealing in fish business at Kyehoro landing site Kikuube district says for months now, fish has been a major problem for fishmongers and consumers, leading to the high price of fish in the area.
Wycliffe Wobusinge, a fisherman at Butiaba landing site in Buliisa district says government should take action against those using unauthorized fishing nets that trap small fish. He too fears that this may affect revenue collection at landing sites since fishermen are now idle without any work to do.
Joselyne Birungi who operates a restaurant at Ndaiga landing site says most of her customers have abandoned her restaurant because she can’t find fish to cook for them since most of the fishermen come out of the lake with no fish, a thing she says has adversely affected her business.
Joseph Balikenda, a fisherman at Kitebere landing site in Kagadi district says it is becoming difficult for him to fend for his family since whenever he goes into the lake to trap fish, he comes back with nothing.
Richard Wandera, a member of the beach management Unit-BMU at Bugoigo landing site in Buliisa district says the situation could affect revenue collection in the whole region.