“The moratorium is unfair for the fisheries sector,” Mr Eric Opoku, Parliamentary Ranking Member on the Foods and Agriculture committee, said at a press conference in Accra, adding that, the period in which the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture intends to place the ban is a bumper harvest period for the fishermen.
He said with the re-opening of schools for the 2018/2019 academic year in September, the ban would bring hardship on fishers as they would be paying school fees.
Government says the proposed ban is meant to replenish the fishing stock in Ghana’s waters, but the Minority thinks the decision has not been thought through properly, explaining that the ban would bring hardship on the fishers.
He said: “The ban will have adverse effects on the fisher folks. The period for the ban is the bumper harvest for fishermen and so, we will not support the ban. The period will afford the fishermen an opportunity to make profits and also our people in the coastal areas, who depend on fish to celebrate their festivals, would also be affected”
Mr Opoku questioned the channel for announcing the proposed ban, saying that, it should have been the Fisheries Commission rather than the Ministry.
The Minority urged the Government to conduct regular surveys in the waters of Ghana, noting that, Senegal does its closed season by stopping fishing in some areas and not on its entire coast.
“There is no guarantee that the fish will remain in our waters after August,” Mr Opoku said.