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Fisheries Department Warns Against Killing of Juveniles

Feb 23, 2009, 7:48 AM

In line with Government's efforts to conserve the fish stocks of the country, the Department of State for Fisheries Water Resources and National Assembly Matters and its - line Department (Department of Fisheries) wishes to inform the general public particularly the fisher folks that killing of juveniles of any fish species though fishing, grossly contravenes the laws governing exploitation of fish resources of The Gambia.

 The statement is contained in a press release from the Department of State for Fisheries Water Resources and National Assembly Matters.

"This practice undoubtedly is one of the factors responsible for the decline of fish stocks we currently experience in our waters," the release added.

According to Section 68 of the Fisheries Regulation 2008, it is an offence to operate Beach Seines locally known as M'baI Lao, Fish Traps locally known as Dumbu in the fisheries waters of The Gambia.

In addition, there is a ban on the operations of Shrimp drift net locally known as Felefele Sipa Sipa with immediate effect.

Section 63 sub section 1 (b) of the fisheries Act 2007 states that a "person shall not use for fishing, possess any fishing gear or fishing appliance that has been prohibited under any notice or regulation made under the fisheries Act".

In the same vein, all fishermen are required to observe mesh size regulations as outlined in the fisheries Act 2007. The Department of State therefore calls on all fishing net importers and retailers to contact the Department of Fisheries for details regarding recommended mesh sizes for various fishing operations.

Any person who contravenes the provisions of sub section (1) above commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding D10,000.00 and in default of payment of the fine to imprisonment for a term no exceeding one (1) year.

The Department of State therefore requests that all Mayors, Governors district Chiefs, Alkalolu and Security Forces to implement this Regulations with immediate effect.

Meanwhile, the Department of State in collaboration with Mayors, Regional Governors and members of the fisheries fraternity, will embark on a country-wide sensitization on the importance of protecting juvenile fish for sustainable exploitation of the fisheries resources.