Traditional Authority (T/A) Nankumba of Mangochi has commended the Department of Fisheries (DoF) for implementing a Fisheries Integration of Society and Habitats (Fish) Project in the district, saying it has helped to restore “rare species” of fish.
With financial support from United States Agency for International Development (USAid), DoF in collaboration with Pact and other non-governmental organisations, is implementing a five-year Fish Project to teach fishers best practices that conserve fisheries biodiversity and ecosystems.
In an interview on Friday at Malawi College of Fisheries in the district during the signing of a fisheries management agreement and endorsement of participatory fisheries management curriculum with sub fishermen associations, Nankumba described the project as a game-changer among fishers.
“You know people of Mangochi heavily rely on aquatic life. But for the past decades, our lakes have been losing precious species of fish due to failure by the fishers to employ various interventions that promote best practices of biodiversity conservation and control of siltation from the upland,” he said.
On his part, Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development acting director of fisheries Friday Njaya encouraged the associations to conserve nature upland to minimise the impact of run-off from entering the lake.
He asked for collaborative efforts on management of the lake from chiefs, fishers and non-governmental organisations for sustainable use of the lake.
The project engaged locals such as beach village committees and fishers associations.