I refer to your recent stories about the lifting of a fishing ban imposed on several lakes in the eastern and northern parts of Rwanda.
Fishing has resumed on lakes Burera, Ruhondo, and Nasho after the lakes were restocked. This means improved economic activity and better feeding among Rwandans, especially in areas where the activity takes place.
I appeal to the government to protect the sector by putting in place measures for maximum gain. These should include hiring qualified personnel to oversee the sector, adequate financing and discipline among fishermen.
Meanwhile, all stakeholders including local leaders and officers managing the sector should work together to control over-fishing.
Aspects like licensing and fisheries management should be left to fisheries experts in liaison with the Ministry of Agriculture.
Authorities should also put in place fishing guidelines and ensure respect of breeding areas among fishermen to allow for continued reproduction of fish and put a halt to illegal fishing and use of illegal fishing nets, which are detrimental to the sector.
As a practice, existing fishing cooperatives should buy and distribute recommended fishing nets.