BY ANDREW MWANGURA
Now that the Syllabus for training of fishermen is published, the Government should set a Special Task Force on fishing industry.
The task force would help to identify the root cause of problems affecting the sector and to formulate measures to avoid past mistakes.
Some issues it should investigate include the reasons why FV UCHUMI and FV UFUNGUO stopped operating causing the KFI poor performance since 1990s, and circumstances behind the collapse of the KFI’s training institute at Liwatoni for fishermen.
The other one is what went wrong with the fisheries program of the Kenya Commercial Bank and the training for fishermen at the Bandari Maritime Academy.
Many times, training for fishermen has been tried and flopped.
The suggested Task Force should also report on the infrastructure of training and come up with a comprehensive report that gives formula for reviving fishery.
The team should include representatives from Kenya Fisheries Services, Association of Maritime Practitioners, Association of Deep-Sea Fishing, Seafarers Union of Kenya, among others.
The proposed Special Task Force can benchmark with Berbera Maritime and Fisheries Academy, Korea Institute of Maritime and Fisheries Technology, Seychelles Maritime Academy, Namibian Maritime and Fisheries Institute and Mbegani Fisheries Institute in pursuit of the best.
If the government and stakeholders are due serious with the fate of fisheries, then a task force is the crucial starting point.