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Evicted Fishermen Advised to Embrace Farming

More than 200 landing sites in the districts of Hoima, Buliisa and Kikuube were listed for closure by the government, for allegedly facilitating the illegal movement of people to and from the Democratic Republic of Congo at the height of a lockdown occasioned by an outbreak of Coronavirus Disease. The first phase of the process saw at least 61 landing sites closed in May.
Some of the fishing boats parked at Kijangi landing site in Hoima district after the suspension of fishing activities on Lake Albert. Photo by Emmanuel Okello.

Audio 1

Fishermen who were recently evicted from illegal landing sites across Lake Albert in Bunyoro sub-region have been advised to embrace farming in order to sustain their livelihood. 

More than 200 landing sites in the districts of Hoima, Buliisa and Kikuube were listed for closure by the government, for allegedly facilitating the illegal movement of people to and from the Democratic Republic of Congo at the height of a lockdown occasioned by an outbreak of Coronavirus Disease. The first phase of the process saw at least 61 landing sites closed in May.    

But Several fishermen have decried the loss of livelihood since the eviction.  Many are still stranded, with nowhere to go, because they had established permanent homes at the landing sites. To date, some of them are still being accommodated in churches while others are being accommodated in their relative’s homes.

State Minister for Bunyoro Affairs Ernest Kiiza advises that instead of crying over the loss of livelihood, the affected fishermen should change their lifestyle, acquire land and practice commercial Agriculture saying they can not only depend on fishing for their entire life. 

//Cue in; “Aliyo abantu ba… 

Cue out…batali ha mwaru.”//   

The Ugandan government announced a suspension of fishing activities on Lake Albert in April 2020, in line with the nationwide lockdown announced by President Yoweri Museveni, as a measure to control person to person interactions and close possible loopholes in the management of Coronavirus disease.

According to the government, some Ugandan fishermen cross to the Democratic Republic of Congo where they mix freely with the local communities there exposing them to infection.