The Fisheries and Aquaculture County Chief Officer (CCO) Evans Lomodei, chaired a meeting between the County Government and Fisheries Stakeholders to discuss the implementation of the Fisheries Sector Plan.
The meeting, held at Loropio in Kalokol Ward, was also meant to discuss and plan for the upcoming annual World Fisheries Day set to be held later this month at Eliye, Kang’atotha Ward.
In his opening remarks, CCO Lomodei said they had chosen to collaborate with partners on the implementation of the fisheries programmes as stipulated in the County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP), align them and avoid duplication of programmes.
The long-term objective of the strategy, Lomodei said, was to ensure programmes leave indelible and impactful strides within the targeted areas.
To drive on fish development, the Chief Officer, informed the stakeholders present that his Department had created three components; Capture Fisheries, Aquaculture and Fish Quality Assurance and Marketing.
He observed that the fishing sector has been left behind globally. And stated that the Department was engaging Fish Actors in the County through the Governor’s Agenda on collaboration and strategic partnership.
The effort is geared towards addressing existing fishing gaps and enhancing the fish value chain through mobilising resources to complement Government programmes.
High post-harvest losses, weak marketing systems, poor fishing technology, poor fisheries infrastructure, climate extremes as well as inadequate scientific information and data, were highlighted as key areas that required public-private partnership to amicably address.
The Director for Fisheries, David Adengo, enumerated the plans such as establishing cold chain facilities and a fish processing plant, as well as capacity building of fisherfolk as a priority for the Directorate this financial year.
Start-Up Lion Co-Founder Brizan Were, said they are working with international partners to study fish migration patterns and use County Government data as a roadmap for ensuring sustainable exploitation of Lake Turkana.
To explore Water Tourism, Were said they had already procured sailing boats and trained members of Beach Main Units (BMU) on their mission to increase exploration and bring communities together.
ASDSP County Coordinator Boniface Okita said they had Ksh. 4M to procure equipment that will reduce post-harvest losses along Lake Turkana.
He expressed a willingness to work with other value chain actors to strengthen the development of fish infrastructure in Turkana.
In attendance were officers from the National Government and representatives from USAID NAWIRI, SAPCONE, Caritas Lodwar, Wetlands International, WFP, USAID LMS and TUPADO.