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Minister Adoa Decries Corruption on Lakes :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Minister Adoa Decries Corruption on Lakes

Adoa, who’s currently conducting community Barrazas across Serere district says that she has received several complaints of extortion attributed to the Fisheries Protection Unit (FPU) manning operations in the lakes.
Minister Hellen Adoa Abeku at Pachoto Landing Site, Kanyangan in Kateta Sub County.

Audio 2

The State Minister for Fisheries, Hellen Adoa Abeku has expressed concern over the increasing cases of corruption reported in the lakes across the country.

Adoa, who’s currently conducting community Barrazas across Serere district says that she has received several complaints of extortion attributed to the Fisheries Protection Unit (FPU) manning operations in the lakes.

Adoa’s comments came after an outcry from the members of the fishing community in Kanyangan, Pingire, and Kadungulu sub-counties over corruption tendencies.

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Ivan Allan Aisu, the LCI Chairperson of Akumoi 2 in Pingire Sub County says that the FPU personnel conduct business in the lake instead of fighting illegal fishing. He says that all the people who are found and arrested with illegal fishing gear end up paying money to gain freedom. He adds that whenever the illegal fishing gears are impounded in the lake, the FPU officials rarely destroy them but sell them to other people at different landing sites.

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Last year, 22 boats were confiscated by FPU in Odapakol in Pingire Sub County over alleged illegal fishing in the lake. Information in Serere, however, indicates that all the fishermen found with the alleged illegal fishing gear were released after paying between 100,000 to 300,000 Shillings each.

Since the government intensified operations against illegal fishing gear, FPU personnel now monitor the lake both night and day. The operations have also led to increased cases of drowning in the lake, especially in Serere district where at least two lives are lost every month.  

In 2020, President Yoweri Museveni threatened to recall UPDF officers attached to the Fisheries Protection Unit-FPU over corruption-related claims.  He said that he deployed FPU to clean up the lake, however, some officers are extorting fishermen with illegal fishing gear which undermines the core principles of their operations.