The new fishing port is still waiting for its tenants

Although their appreciation of this jewel co-financed around 16 billion CFA by the Japanese cooperation (Jica) and the Togolese state, the fishermen ask the government to do a little more by putting in place all that is planned.

"After the inauguration, we made a number of observations and we realized that what is there today does not allow us to start the activities because there are some infrastructures that need to be settled", reveals Ametepe Gnininvi Amedji, General Secretary of the Union of Maritime Fishery Cooperatives (UNICOOPEMA).

Among the failures already mentioned at the inauguration on April 24, 2019, we have the fish market, the storage warehouse, the mechanical cabin, the canteen and the fuel station.

"After the inauguration, the site is left without fence, talking of safety, we are very exposed. As we are in a complementary activity, we need a fish market in which the wholesalers and the retailers can do their business. Also, our fishing gears must necessarily have a storage and a mechanical cabin," says Derman Adam, deputy general secretary of the National Federation of Fisheries Cooperatives Unions in Togo (FENUCOOPETO).

Each sector must have its status

One of the characteristics of this new fishing port compared to the old one is that the activities will be well organized. To this end, a regulation on several points has been developed and each sector will have its status.

"For the producers, it is the respect of our activities, not to do illegal fishing for example, we think of a period of biological rest to allow the fish to reproduce within a month. For processors, it will be the practice of absolute hygiene so that our products can access international markets. For traders, it will be question of being in good standing with the OTR and customs," Ametepe suggests.

With this new fishing port, one of the novelties that hit the door today of the corporation, is the sale by kg. If it is already effective at the level for big fishes, it remains a puzzle in small fishes.

"We have time of lean and time of abundance that makes the price vary and according to the species. For example, species like sea bream, grouper are noble species which are sold by kg. Species such as mackerel, anchovies, sardinella, there are units of measure but currently we want to go on sale by kg. The federation is studying this case to raise awareness for people to arrive at standard prices", explains Derman.

As solution, UNICOOPEMA plans to weigh the contents of bowls and small measuring baskets to know their weight. At the inauguration on April 24, the Minister in charge of the sector, Noël Koutera Bataka promised that diligence will be done to fill the rest of the expectations.

In the meantime, the fishermen of Gbetsogbe are playing the extra time on their old site hoping to move very soon to the new very modern site.

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