THE 2020/2021 fish ban has been boosted through a K3 million government injection that would go towards enforcing the exercise.
The exercise would include water patrols which will get a huge chunk of funds for the ban that was launched by the Minister of Fisheries and Livestock on November 30 2020 and is on until March 1, 2021.
Permanent Secretary in the Livestock Ministry Benson Mwenya told ZANIS in an interview that the idea is to ensure that the damage caused by illegal fishing is controlled and reduced at the source rather than secondary control.
He added that the funds have been disbursed to officers that are on the ground curbing all forms of illegal fishing activities rather than just focusing on fish traders.
300 people have so far been arrested across the country with a total of 4, 276 Kilograms of assorted fish confiscated and disposed of by the courts’ law while 624 fishing nets and 97 boats have also been confiscated.
“Our only concern is that the conviction rates are still low at 10 percent of the total arrests given that some of the cases are still active in the courts of law,” Dr. Mwenya said.
Luapula Province has so far recorded the highest number of arrests and fishing nets confiscated at 165 and 160 respectively while the least number of arrests have been recorded from Copperbelt Province with no arrests recorded at all.
Lusaka Province has so far recorded the second-highest number of assorted nets confiscated at 144 and only eight arrests.