President, Fishermen Association of Lagos State, Alhaji Fasasi Adekunle, has said that activities of multi-national companies on the high sea had led to water pollution and dearth of fish.
Adekunle told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Monday, September 16, 2019 that multi-national companies were causing oil spill and chemical pollution which had driven fishes far into the deep sea.
According to him, pollution has made fishing more difficult and riskier to members who are forced to travel far into the sea to operate.
“The activities of well-known companies on the sea are forcing fishermen to about 600 meters into the deep sea. This is worrisome.
“The chemical is destroying business. We are not making enough catch as before because it is driving the fishes away.
“The number of fishes we have this year is very low because of constant pollution and lack of modern equipment for fishing,’’ he said.
The association’s president described fish as a major source of food for Nigerians, saying that the country was not producing enough to feed the citizens.
Adekunle noted that dredging activities in Lagos Lagoon was another problem that had affected fishing business and depleted its benefits.
“We go about 600 metres into the Lagos Lagoon because the dredging work is hindering fishing business as experienced on the high sea.
“The dredging poses a threat and a challenge to the fishing business. We appeal to government to urgently address the problems to avoid creating unemployment
“We have over one million fishermen in the state alone and we all are having same difficulties,’’ he said.
Adekunle called on the state government to provide speed boats, to check oil spill and indiscriminate dredging of the lagoon to enable fishermen move deeper into the sea.
He suggested that government should assist members of the association with speed boat engines such as Yamaha and Suzuki to operate effectively.
By Olayinka Olawale