Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda agree on action plan & info exchange to curb illegal and unregulated fishing on Lake Victoria
Wednesday, January 29, 2003
The East African Standard (Nairobi, Kenya). By Philip Osewe
The three East African countries have developed an action plan to curb illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing on Lake Victoria.
Directors of fisheries from the three countries said they have established regular cross-border meetings involving fishermen, law enforcement agencies, fisheries officers and local authorities from both sides of the border.
They said they had developed an exchange system for information on fisheries regulation and procedures between the three countries and will communicate them to fishing communities and other resource users.
Nancy Gitonga (Kenya), Thomas Wanyika Maembe (Tanzania) and John Balirwa (Uganda) were speaking yesterday when they made a courtesy call on Homa Bay District Commissioner (DC) Clement Kiteme in his office.
They were accompanied by Executive Secretary-General of Lake Victoria Fisheries organisation K F Katonda, Philip Bwathondi, Director General of Tanzania Fisheries Research Institute and F Kazungu of Kenya Fish Research Institute.
Relevant government authorities, Gitonga said, have established border points on key islands on the lake to ease cross-border transactions.
He said fishermen will now have easy access to licences that regulate access to cross-border fishing grounds in the vicinity of their landing site of operation.
She said the border areas will be monitored by joint patrols comprising enforcement agents from both countries.
Patrolling teams, she added, will wear identification tags when on duty on the lake.
The team visited the district to harmonise fisheries regulations and strengthen monitoring, control and surveillance on the lake.