Ivory Coast has joined Ghana to observe the 2023 closed season for a one-month period.
According to the Minister, plans are in place to ensure that neighbouring Togo and Benin follow in the footsteps of Ivory Coast.
The Ministry believe the development is an indication of the partnership between the countries to ensure massive yield after the season.
According to the sector minister, Mavis Hawa Koomson, an alternative livelihood training support programme will be introduced to support about thousand three hundred and fifty fishermen across the coast of the country in selected communities.
Trainees will be given support to ensure that they can earn income from the trade.
This the Ministry says is to make up for the one-month period where these fisherfolks will not be going for fishing.
According to her, in times past, the fisherfolks lamented the lack of support on the part of government during the close season period urging the youth to engage in the project.
The close season period according to the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development is set to commence from the 1st to the 31st of July for artisinal canoes and inshore vessels.
That of trawlers also start from the 1st of July to the 31st of August 2023.
Sector Minister Mavis Hawa Koomson called for collaboration from the fishermen to ensure the exercise is successful.
“When we started the exercise, there were some challenges and resistance from the fishermen, but I believed they have now seen the importance of the exercise. Interestingly Ivory Coast has also joined us by embarking on the close season. This is a step in the right direction and very soon, neighbours– Togo and Benin– will also follow in that direction. This will help maximize the catch when the sea is opened,” Hawa Koomson said.
The Minister indicated that security agencies will be deployed to ensure compliance across the coast of the country adding that offenders will be prosecuted when arrested.
Omanhene of Edina Traditional Council Nana Kwodwo Condua wants the Ministry to consider establishing a fisheries bank that can support local fishermen with loans to expand their business.
Some fishermen who shed light on the close season believe it will transform the sector.