Nana Kweigyah, President of the Canoe and Fishing Gear Owners Association of Ghana (CaFGOAG), has welcomed the government’s decision to boost fish production mostly through increased focus on oceanic and inland earthen ponds.
He, therefore, commended the government for the commitment to provide affordable energy for the artisanal sector, as captured in the 2024 budget presented to parliament last week.
Nana Kweigyah, however, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that they were concerned about the poor management of the premix sector, which, according to him, ended up depriving fishermen of the full benefits of the subsidised premix fuel.
He said it was their expectation that the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development (MoFAD) would expedite action on the premix automation project to cover every single landing beach.
He said that would avoid running double-management regimes in the premix fuel sub-sector, as it undermined effective management of the premix fuel.
He added that it was also their expectation that, in the spirit of transparency, accountability, and good governance, the MoFAD would publish the premix audit report and update stakeholders on year-on-year allocations to various landing beaches.
“It is important to emphasise that all the problems with premix fuel management and distribution are a creation of the government out of the unwillingness of the National Premix Fuel Secretariat and, for that matter, MoFAD to adhere strictly to the National Premix Fuel Committee Regulation 2016,” he stressed.
According to him, the issue bordered on political will and commitment rather than just the automated system.
CaFGOAG therefore urged the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture to ensure that the National Premix Fuel Secretariat adhered strictly to the Premix Fuel Committee Regulation.
The Association also called for the review of the National Premix Fuel Committee Regulations, 2016 (L.I. 2233) to address the gaps that had allowed for mismanagement in the sector.
Mr. Ken Ofori-Atta, the Finance Minister, stated that the government, under the Growth Strategy, aims at boosting fish production mostly through increased focus on oceanic and inland earthen ponds.
This was contained in the 2024 budget and economic policy presented to Parliament on Wednesday by Mr. Ofori-Atta.
He noted that the goal was to support fishermen, fish farmers, and fish processors in the coastal regions.
He said “the interventions planned in this sub-sector include direct support for the production, distribution, and storage of fish as well as producing and supplying over 110,700,000 litres of Premix fuel using gasoline and condensate.”