The Deputy Director General for Technical Services at the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA), William Y. Boeh, has underscored the important role co-management Association plays in the management of sustainable fisheries.
Fisheries co-management is a partnership arrangement in which the community of local resource users (fishers) and government, with support and assistance as needed from other stakeholders, share the responsibility and authority for the management of fisheries.
Speaking Wednesday at the start of a one-day stakeholder’s consultation workshop for Co-Management Association Policy Development at NaFAA, Mr. Boeh said co-management is an essential tool in the sustainability efforts of fisheries.
The NaFAA boss further indicated that he is optimistic that the fisheries industry of Liberia would win the fight against illegal fishing if co-management is prioritized by stakeholders.
He also informed the gathering that the fisheries authority was making efforts to ensuring that every coastal county has a co-management association for the sustainable management of Liberia’s fishery resources.
Mr. Boeh maintained, “Liberia has nine coastal counties, and we will ensure that every county has a CMA. The first CMA was in Robertsport, and later Bomi and Montserrado. We’ll reach out to our partners including the EU to mobilize support to extend to other counties”.
However, the event, with support from the European Union (EU), was held under the auspices of the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF), a registered charity working for the good of the environment.
Providing overview of the workshop, EJF Chief Representative Officer, Cephas Asare said he was glad that co-management remains at the heart of NaFAA’s operations considering that it first became operational in Robertsport.
According to him, the consultative workshop was meant to have a policy that guides the direction of co-management.
Earlier, the First Counsellor of the European Union Delegation to Liberia, Stefania Marrone, said strong political commitment is needed to secure the continual positive economic and social developments in Liberia’s fisheries sector.
Madam Marrone then lauded NaFAA for being involved in the process and taking ownership and responsibility for the consultation to ensure the development of a strong co-management policy.
She added that the EU strongly believes that enforcing co-management with all stakeholders will increase the benefits to the fisheries sector in Liberia which can go back to its golden future.
“The EU is glad to have been able to deliver its support to Liberia’s fisheries sector and remains confident that the good usage of the aid will allow Liberia to conduct fishery communities in Liberia to a sustainable and united fishery policy,” madam Marrone noted.
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