Gambia have racked up a total nine million dalasis out of foreign vessels for illegal fishing.
This was made public today at parliament as fisheries minister James F Gomez faced lawmakers.
A veteran football administrators now minister of fisheries and water resources, James’ answer came on the heels of grilling from Jangjangbureh’s representative over encroachment.
“We are able to gather nine million dalasis in illegal fishing,” he divulges.
Revealing license to fish lasts for three months for the twelve vessels permitted in Gambian waters, Gomez took time to elucidate on the modalities involved in hunting for offenders.
Liaising with Gambia’s navy in efforts to nab law-breakers, the minister would brood over how poorly equipped the navy is in curtailment bids.
“I wish Gambia could protect their water. The navy could be of help but now the way the navy are structured, their vessels are too small to say ok they will be there guarding our waters for one month,” he said.
On the format of apprehension and subsequent fines 40% of which goes to the fisheries funds, Gomez revealed the the fisheries management centre have been of immense aid in covering for the navy’s shortcomings.
“We collaborate with the navy. The navy go to sea and when they arrest a vessel, they come back and write a report and then we get our directorate to go and do another report and then we compare these two reports that is when we begin the action of what do do next.
“We have the fisheries management centre, it’s what is helping us. With then, we can know who is doing the wrong thing then they will just go and apprehend them. When we do fines, a portion of which goes to fisheries development funds 40%, GLF 30 % and the navy 30%,” he said.