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17.12.2008 General News

Local Fishermen's Group Now In Charge Of Premix Sales

By Clement Adzei Boye, Sekondi - newtimesonline.com
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The Ministry of Fisheries has directed that, the management, distribution and marketing of premix fuel in the fishing communities, should be the responsibility of the local fishermen associations. The ministry has also asked Regional Coordinating councils (RCC) to stop imposing levies on fuel tankers which convey premix to the fishing communities.

The minister for fisheries Mrs Gladys Asmah, announced this at the launching of “operation stock control” at the Western Naval Base at Sekondi on Monday.

The new move, comes after complaints from fishermen that, the management of premix had been characterized by politics, bureaucracy, officialdom and corruption.

For some time now, the Times had learnt the premix issue had generated emotional debates anytime the matter is raised for public discourse.

The other complaint was with the transition of the management of the product through Interim Management Committees (IMCs) and there had also been complaints of diversion.

Mrs Asmah said that from now on, profits accruing from the sale of premix fuel should be retained by the various associations to finance community projects.

“The Ministry of Fisheries needs the concerted efforts of all stakeholders to help weed out the bad nuts from the fishing industry.  This is the way forward not only to safeguard the investment of the sector but also to make the fishing industry a respectable sector,” she added.

She told the gathering that, the government had always been subsidizing premix fuel for fishermen to break even and earn enough to cater for their families.

Opanyin Kofi Essuon, who owns canoes with the inscription “Isaac” and Kobina Ebow Ankomah, both from Moree in the Central Region, told the Times that the distribution of premix had been regular.

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