Liberia: Nat’l Fisheries Authority Decries the Use of Used Diapers to Smoke Fish
MONROVIA – The Director-General of the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA), Madam Emma Metieh Glassco, has alarmed over the use of used baby pampers by some individuals to smoke or dry fish in Liberia.
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According to her, the agency remains concerned about the unhygienic manner and form of fish preservation in the country.
Madam Glassco maintained that most often some fisherman and others engaged into a ‘substandard way’ of preserving fish, something she added, has claimed the attention of NaFAA.
She made these comments when she appeared as guest on the newly established Bana FM98.5 on the Bushrod Island, outside Monrovia recently.
As part of efforts to curb the situation, Madam Glassco disclosed that plans are underway for the construction of adequate and hygienic landing sites and storages for local fishermen across Liberia.
She indicated that infrastructure facilities and storages will be setup in each county to enable local fishermen preserve their catches for exportation to other country around the world.
She observed that the lack of these facilities and cooling storages is hindering local fishermen’s quest to export their catches as compare to their counterparts.
Madam Glassco disclosed that the move will also help to address waste created as a result of contaminated or left over fish.
“This year we are focusing on building infrastructure across the counties for local fishermen. These local fishermen lack the storage facility and proper landing sites. When you are not landing in hygienic conditions, you don’t have accreditation to export outside. And so that’s why you only sell in your domestic space and you cannot export. That is something they will love to do to expose them to international market”.
“Once we can develop those infrastructures and have these storage facilities; it will also help them to curb the waste. Most of the times the fish that they catch-before the day ends, it spoils. The way that it is smokered, it is in a very substandard way. I also understand recently that people are using baby pampers and all kind of dirty stuffs to smoke fish”.
She indicated that NaFAA remains concerned about what is placed on the market by local fishermen, and as such, the entity will continue to introduce strong policies to regulate the sector and guarantee the health and safety of consumers.
“This year we are focusing on building infrastructure across the counties for local fishermen. These local fishermen lack the storage facility and proper landing sites. When you are not landing in hygienic conditions, you don’t have accreditation to export outside. And so that’s why you only sell in your domestic space and you cannot export. That is something they will love to do to expose them to international market”.– Emma Metieh Glassc, Director-General, NaFAA
Rehabilitation of fishing pier
Speaking further, Madam Glassco disclosed that a US$40 million secured from the World Bank to develop Liberia’s fishing industry, will focus on the expansion and rehabilitation of the Mesurado Fishing Pier which was constructed in the 1970s.
She disclosed that following the completion of the project, the pier will attract numerous registered international fishing ships or vessels that are not paying taxes to the Liberian government because they are not landing here.
“Once we have an industrial fishing port, we will have numerous vessels coming here. That will mean a lot for Liberia. Once we have an industrial fishing facility-all the vessels that are going to be on our waters; it’s going to be mandatory that they land at our port”.
Madam Glassco pointed out that those fishing vessels cannot land at the commercial Freeport of Monrovia, but a designated pier.
She disclosed that the economies of other Africa countries are booming over Liberia because, fishing vessels are paying regular taxes to these nations that have industrialized fishing piers.
At the same time, Madam Glassco has disclosed that the agency will very shortly commence the distribution of fishing nets to local fishermen across the country.
She added that the Japanese government has also completed the procurement of yahama engine motors for local fishermen who have peddling canoes, and as such, those motors will be distributed to them by next year.
According to her, the move will help increase productivity of local Liberian fishermen.
“Few weeks from now we will be distributing free nets across the country. Ten weeks from now, we are hoping that the fishing nets will be here. The Japanese will send two technicians when the boats arrive and they will build a store for repairs. And that will be free of charge to the government”.