Thursday, March 19, 2015

Govt should restructure fishing policies and lift ban- Ngami Communities

This past week the Minister Enviroment Wildlife and Tourism Tshekedi Khama placed a twelve month ban on fishing due to issues pertaining to sanitation, overcrowding and mispricing by Zambian pirate fishermen at Lake Ngami and Lake Xau in the Maun region.

“It was necessary to ban it until fishermen get organized and proper regulatory policies are put in place,” reassured Bareetsi Bogaisang, Ngami Fishing Cluster Chairman.
This development comes following outrage by local fishermen that government should intervene on the illicit fishing activities going on at Lake Ngami perpetuated by Zambian and Congolese nationals who flood the wetlands in Botswana without permits, causing severe threats including possible extinction of species, economic losses as well as loss of livelihood in the region. They had complained that Batswana remain disadvantaged since they have no market and trade regulations remain very stringent with regards to exporting fish.

An official at the Department of Environmental Affairs, Dr Michael Flyman said that there has been a growing concern about the mushrooming of illegal fishermen who essentially export these fish without proper permits to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia and neighboring countries.

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