By Ndey Sowe
The Gambia and Senegal have shown commitment to regulate and implement a policy that will enable the citizenry to benefit on the fisheries resources that both countries shared.
These revelations came on Friday morning during a courtesy call by the Senegalese Fisheries Minister to Gambia’s Fisheries Minister, presided over by the Vice President of The Gambia, Dr. Isatou Touray, in Banjul.
The visit, according to Alioune Ndoye, Senegal’s Minister for Fisheries, is to show solidary and give condolence to the deceased family of the recent crisis that happened at Sanyang village. He said the visit also aims to applaud the Gambia Government stand during the incident.
Ndoye said the two countries have resources they shared, which is the fisheries sector. He therefore emphasized the need for its protection, preservation and development for the betterment of both nations.
Ndoye said another reason for his visit is for both countries to look on ways to strive and collaborate in the security and maintenance of the sector.
“There are some industries that we bring into our countries at times recently in the past have impacted greatly in the economic benefits of the sector,” he said.
In this regard, he said these are some of the areas both countries will be looking at to be able to regulate them in terms of putting together resources for its safety and for economic expansion of both nations.
James Gomez, Gambia’s Minster of Fisheries, said the fisheries resources of the Gambia are shared not only by Senegal but all other countries in the coast, saying there is no boundary as far as the sea is concern.
“We have a bilateral relationship between Gambia and Senegal to see how we can regulate the industry that we don’t have over fishing,” he said.
Minister Gomez said there is a sub-regional fisheries organisation which Senegal and The Gambia are part of.
“Plans are on the way in trying to implement a policy that will enable our people to benefit on the fisheries resources we have,” he revealed.
In this context, he said they are working towards getting everybody to understand that there are laws and regulation on where to fish and not to fish. He said if the law is implemented, there will be sustenance and everybody will benefit from the resources available in the sector.
“We the Gambia unfortunately are jet to be able to polish our boundaries. We are now discussing possibility of buying two surveillance boats and to have a fisheries management system that will alert any ship entering illegally in the Gambia,” he said.
Minister Gomez highlighted that in their bilateral relationship, they put in policies that must be reviewed annually between both countries.
“Now we are rebuilding the department of fisheries so that we can have the capacity to continue to implement the policies that we put in place for safety,” he said.