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1.5 billion shillings fish collection center lying idle in Kenya

Abandoned fish collection center at Majanji landing site. Courtesy photo

Busia, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | A fish collection center built in Majanji sub-county in Busia district has remained idle for the last 7 years. The Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries set up the Shillings 1. 5 billion fish collection center with funding from the African Development Bank.

The ministry commissioned the center in 2013 and handed it to Busia district local government. Patrick Wandera, Rosemary Auma and Musana Bumali, all residents of Majanji sub-county say the fish collection center is useless because it is no longer providing the expected services in the area.

The center is covered with bushes and has since become home to snakes, bats and other wild animals. Auma says that they want the government to revive the fish collection center to enable people to get jobs.

Musana Bumali, a resident says that the fish collection center has become dangerous for residents and fishermen since it is a habitat for crocodiles and hippos. He appealed to the government to take over the fish collection center.

Patrick Wandera, one of the former managers of the fish collection center says that the project suffered a serious setback in 2014 when the fish catch dropped.

He says that fishermen abandoned the landing site when Uganda People’s Defense Forces-UPDF weredeployed to stop illegal fish practices.

Karim Babi, another resident says that they have asked their area leaders to lobby for funds to revive the fish collection center at Majanji landing site in vain. They now want the government to come and take up the project instead of it remaining a haven for wild animals.

Eugene Egesa, the Busia District Fisheries Officer says that the fish collection center only worked for two years before it was abandoned due to lack of fish. He says that they are currently in talks with a private company involved in fish farming to utilize the fish collection center. He says that the company which engages in cage fish farming in Busia and Namayingo districts has indicated willingness to use the fish collection center.

Godfrey Were Odero, Samia Bugwe south legislator says that he is also struggling to lobby so that the Parliamentary Committee on Tourism, Trade and Industry where he seats allocate some funds to renovate Majanji landing site and provide a ferry to ease transport to other places like Sigulu Island, Jinja, Lolwe Island, Hama Island and Masese among others.

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