The government has suspended the supply of premix fuel to some four landing beaches in the Central Region until further notice. The affected landing beaches are British Komenda, Moree, Abandze and Dago.
According to the National Premix Fuel Secretariat of the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, the decision is a punitive measure for light fishing and other illegal fishing practices perpetuated by fishermen in such areas after the closed season despite an earlier caution by the sector minister, Mavis Hawa Koomson.
In a letter addressed to the Chief Executives of the Komenda Edina Eguafo Abirem (KEEA), Abura Asebu Kwamankese, Mfantsiman, and the Gomoa West districts, the Secretariat explained that: “Light fishing and other illegal fishing activities perpetuated by fishermen is viewed seriously by the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development (MOFAD) and its agencies because
of its negative impacts on marine stock and industry growth.”
“The National Premix Fuel Secretariat and indeed MOFAD is aware that Premix Fuel, which is subsidized by Government is regrettably used to fuel generators for the illicit practice of light fishing.”
Ghana was nearly sanctioned with a “yellow card” penalty by the European Union (EU) and continues to be at the risk of a potential “red card” which connotes an outright ban from exports of fish to the European market alongside other detriments should these illegal activities continue, the National Premix Fuel Secretariat noted in the letter.
The Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture, Mavis Hawa Koomson, in August 2021, threatened to deny fishermen at Elmina and other parts of the Central Region premix fuel for their unwillingness to renounce light fishing.
She at the time indicated that the restrictions will be lifted when there are indications of compliance on the part of the fisherfolk.
Source: Edna Agnes Boakye