The Uganda Peoples Defence Forces Fisheries Protection Unit-FPU has distributed four tones of impounded immature fish to Uganda Prisons Services, schools, and residents in Kasese.
The fish mainly Nile Perch was impounded near the Ugandan border with the Democratic Republic of Congo-DRC in Nyabugando being transported in a truck Reg. UAY/123R.
Maj. Yero Muhoozi, the FPU Political Commissar says the decision followed a court order allowing them to dispose of the impounded fish.
Maj. Muhoozi condemned the continued act of trading in immature fish adding that operations have been heightened to curb the practice. He is hopeful that the enforcement of the law will be better when Parliament passes the Fisheries and Aquaculture Bill, 2021.
The Bill was tabled before Parliament and seeks to consolidate and reform the law relating to the management of fisheries products and aquaculture due to several challenges and emerging issues in the regulation and management of the sector which are not addressed.
The Kasese Resident District Commissioner Lt. Joe Walusimbi demanded the collaboration of all stakeholders including the local community to curb trading in immature fish.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, illegal fishing involves using less than five-inch fishing nets for Tilapia and less than seven-inch fishing nets for Nile Perch. It also entails using fishing boats that are less than 20 feet in length.
It is estimated that Uganda loses USD 430 million from unregulated fishing every year.
To improve regulation and restock the lakes, President Museveni ordered the deployment of FPU personnel on the lakes in 2017.
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