By Silvia Kugonza
In the past, the fishing industry in Uganda was faced by a number of challenges among which was the dwindling of the fish stock in the water a problem that was largely related to illegal fishing where fishermen used to catch immature fish.
Currently after adopting to the recommended fishing gears, fishermen particularly in Kasese have not been helped by the same industry to address their challenges.
Fishermen at Kisenyi fish landing site in Rubirizi district still continue to decry the continued influx of Congolese on Lake Edward.
Despite having the largest part of the water body, Congolese still continue to encroach on the smaller percentage of the water in Uganda.
Lake Edward also known as Edward Nyanza is located in the Albertine rift on the border of Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo with its northern shore a few kilo metres south of the equator.
According to John Patrick Muhangi the chairperson of Kasenyi landing site, despite having been directed by the fisheries department to use 5 inches fishing nets, Congolese continue to encroach on the fish with illegal nets.
Patrick added that the fishermen are most puzzled by the fact that the law enforcing the use of proper fishing gears only works in Uganda and yet the water body is shared by Congolese who despite having the largest part of the water body still enter Uganda without restrictions.
Mr. John Patrick Muhangi also expressed the concern of the availability of crocodiles in the lake which do not only eat fish but also consume humans.
Kyombire Donanta is a victim of a crocodile bite who said it was one morning when she woke for work but reaching in the lake she was caught by a crocodile on the handle before she was rushed to hospital.
Murembezi John said Congolese should either be advised to use 5 inches nets like they do or they let them use 4 inches like Congolese or else there is no more business in fish.
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