Next NDC govt will exempt artisanal fishing from closed season – Mahama

Former President John Dramani Mahama has promised that in his next administration, canoe and artisanal fishermen will be exempted from the closed season exercise.

According to him, the activities of these groups of fishers do not play a role in the issue of dwindling fish stock in the country.

The closed season which is implemented annually is intended to allow fish spawn to improve Ghana’s dwindling fish stocks.

Speaking to a delegate at Mfantseman a fishing community as part of his campaign tour of the Central region, Mr. Mahama said the closed season will be for only trawlers.

“Only fishing trawlers will participate in the closed season exercise. Canoe and artisanal fishermen will be exempted as they do not contribute to the dwindling fisher stock. Rather it’s the activities of the big trawlers that can be blamed for that. Their activities are affecting canoe and artisanal fishermen who go on sea but return empty-handed. So we will close the season for the big trawlers, but the small canoe fishermen can continue with their day-to-day activities,” Mr. Mahama assured.

Closed season otherwise known as the “biological rest period,” is the stopping of fishing activities during the spawning period of the stocks.

Closed seasons are observed as a way of reducing fishing pressure on stocks when they are most productive in terms of allowing the fish a chance to lay their eggs to replace the lost population due to fishing and other natural causes.