Govt to support fish cage farmers


Government will start supporting organised farmers groups to enhance productivity in the sector, the state minister for Agriculture, Mr Vincent Ssempijja, has said.

Mr Ssempijja, who was touring fish cages of the Lutoboka fishing community in Kalangala Town Council on Tuesday, said more residents should engage in fish cage farming to increase the catch and feed the international market.

“Government doesn’t have enough money, but the little it has can be shared among enterprising Ugandans to generate more wealth for the people in the country,” the minister said.

“It is better you form groups and contribute the little you have to procure cages and there after government will support you,” he added.

Mr Ssempijja, however, warned residents against starting savings groups with the ulterior motive of embezzling money.

“Even government wants to provide for those who are organised and are corrupt free,” he said.
Kalangala has been experiencing a decline in fish stocks for the last five years –a problem blamed on the poor fishing methods.

Last year, the former state minister for Fisheries, Ms Ruth Nankabirwa, said government was looking for private investors to practice cage fish farming on Lake Victoria to generate more revenue for the country.

The district chairperson, Mr Willy Lugoloobi, said they are currently in negotiations with a Chinese company to invest in fish cage farming.
“Even the district wants to start rearing fish as a way of investing to get more revenue and provide services to our people since we get limited local revenue,” he said.

Mr Jackson Baguma, the district Fisheries officer said cage fish farming has less effects to the eco system and will help increase productivity. Currently, the district has only seven fish cage farmers.

The numbers

The number of smallholder farmers in Uganda practising fish farming.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor