Livestock, fisheries budget thrills stakeholders

STAKEHOLDERS in livestock and fisheries have expressed satisfaction with the ministry’s budget for 2023/2024, suggesting that a road map be established to ensure that the priorities are carried out as intended.

The ministry’s budget for the 2023/24 fiscal year was approved by the Parliament on Tuesday.

In his budget speech Minister Abdalah Ulega highlighted several priorities for the ministry to increase the sector’s contribution to the country’s economic growth.

In response to the budget, during telephone interviews with ‘Daily News’ on Friday President of Tanzania Association of Accountants (TAA) Mr Godvictor Lyimo, said it was critical for the ministry to also provide a road map in carrying out the determined priorities.

“The priorities are good, the problem is how they will be implemented,” he explained. “We can have the best policies and strategies, but how they are implemented is also critical.” said Mr Lyimo.

In terms of increasing pastures as a ministry priority, this is an area that has caused conflicts between herders and farmers, the ministry must ensure that this is resolved once and for all.

Mr Lyimo added that, they expected to hear in the budget about how technology will be used to benefit livestock keepers and those looking to get into the industry.

Modern cattle farming and market access, according to Mr Nassoro Abdalah Nassoro, Chairman of Dairy Keepers in Buyuni Ward of Ilala Municipality, are among the critical priorities that require more attention.

He stated that the current markets are unjust and do not benefit keepers, saying the ministry is required to place special emphasis and strategies on modern cattle farming and search for reliable markets.

“We sell milk to the factory, but the price is so low that it does not benefit us simply because in cattle farming we incur high costs but do not get what we expect,” stated Mr Nassoro.

He further asked the ministry to look at the consumers of livestock products, including setting prices that will not harm farmers. Additionally, he said that better livestock breeds and education would greatly aid them in adding value to the industry.

Fishers Union Organisation (FUO) also welcomed the ministry’s budget, urging that large part of the money should be channeled to fight illegal fishing on Lake Victoria.

FUO Executive Director, Mr Juvenary Matagili said that the fight against illegal fishing should be intensified to restrict the use of locally made sardines fishing lamps which also contribute to water pollution.

The lamps have got between 15 and 30 watts, far beyond the recommended five to nine watts by the Tanzania Fisheries Research Institution (TAFIRI).

He said the lamps have harsh light that attracts not only premature sardines around the fishing nets, but also the far away smallest fish, mostly the Nile Perch.

“The lamps therefore are draining fish stocks from this water body as they are everywhere in the lake, because the recommended ones are very expensive,” lamented Mr Mtagili.

He added that the ministry should also intensify the patrols in the lake, because despite local lamp use, people are still going for sardines fishing throughout the month, instead of only 14 dark days, a recommended period in a month.

It was further noted that traditional lamps, which are especially composed of sticks and plastic related materials become useless after they get wet and fishers opt to dump them in water.

The water is therefore contaminated everyday because plastic materials never get rotten, he said, adding that: “We know exactly where these evil deeds are taking place inside the Lake, let the authorities consult us so as to make the sector more productive,” he stressed.

The ministry’s top priorities are to increase livestock feed and meat trade market, modern livestock farming, employment opportunities and income in the livestock sector’s value chain, and the livestock sector’s contribution to national income.

Others are creating a fishing authority, making it possible for fishermen to purchase deep-sea fishing boats, offering small-scale fishermen interest-free loans, and expanding fish farming to meet demand.

Related Articles

Back to top button