The Coastal Development Authority (CODA) has engaged stakeholders in the fishing industry on Government’s initiatives and interventions.
The engagement was part of efforts to deepen stakeholder participation in the sector and to eradicate poverty among fisher folks.
More than 4,000 fishermen, fishmongers, head porters and traders as well as representatives from the National Fish Processors and Traders Association of Ghana, premix fuel committees and landing beach committees within the fisheries value chain took part in the forum held in Accra.
The Management of CODA explained the various initiatives being implemented by the Government through the Authority to boost trading activities.
Mr Jerry Ahmed Shaib, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of CODA, outlined initiatives the Authority had designed to ameliorate the suffering of fishers and their families.
He reiterated government’s commitment to helping to equip fisher folks to improve their livelihoods and said 40 horsepower engines of outboard motors with a market value of GHc20,000 was offered to fishers at subsidised prices of GHc10,000 each, while a 15 horsepower engine, which was sold on the open market for GHc14,500 each, was offered to fishers at GHc5,000.
Mr Shaib added that fishers would also receive flexible financial support from the CODA Credit Union at negligible interest rates to empower them financially to boost their businesses.
Regarding transportation of fish from landing beaches to processing sites and markets, Mr Shaib indicated that, CODA was directed by the President to provide tricycles to fishmongers on hire purchase to aid smooth and safe movement of fish.
Mr Mohammed Adjei Sowah, the Mayor of Accra Metropolitan Assembly, encouraged the participants to take advantage of government’s interventions to improve their lives and that of their families.
Making reference to government’s flagship Free Senior High School policy, Mr Adjei Sowah asked the participants to desist from involving children of school-going age in fishing activities, and enroll them in school for a better life in the future.
“If today a grandson of a fisherman is the Mayor of Accra, then President Akufo-Addo is telling you that your child can also become President of the nation”.
Mr Edwin Provencal, the Chief Executive of Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST), implored the fisher folks to focus on their individual and families’ development by availing themselves of the economic and social opportunities available to them through the various initiatives rolled out by the government.