Fishermen at Elmina in the Central Region have expressed confidence in an Interim Management Committee put in place to sell and manage premix fuel at the Elmina landing beach.
The formation of the interim committee follows the destoolment of the Chief Fisherman of Elmina and the dissolution of the old Premix Fuel Committee..
The Fishermen who have given high marks to the Interim Management Committee (IMC) put in place after the Premix Fuel Committee was dissolved told Joy News’ Richard Kwadwo Nyarko they have seen significant improvement in the distribution and sale of the commodity.
“At first, by the time you hear that the premix fuel tanker has arrived, the fuel inside the tanker would have been allocated to people who are not even fishermen. We were really suffering. Our businesses were collapsing. Now, if it is one tanker that comes, the committee makes sure every canoe owner gets his share”, one fisherman remarked.
Another fisherman also said because he is an NPP sympathizer he was sidelined by the old premix committee since the premix fuel was distributed along political lines.
According to him, there is no discrimination in the management of the interim committee.
The new committee comprises a representative of the Municipal Assembly, the Municipal Police Command, the Canoe Owners Association, the Edina Traditional Council and a representative of a youth group at Elmina called Laspamas.
“I am an NPP member. I had to park my canoe while some of my colleagues had to fight in order to get some of the premix fuel to buy. Premix fuel became one of the hottest commodities. Something we were using money to buy”, he reiterated.
While the Fishermen commended the new committee they however called on the Minister of Fisheries to ensure a fast reconstitution of a permanent premix fuel committee to ensure that their businesses are given the needed boost.
The Paramount Chief of Edina Traditional Area, Nana Kwodwo Conduah, who supervised the destoolment and the dissolution of the old committee, also praised the interim committee for bringing smiles to the faces of the Fishermen.
He lauded the unity that is currently prevailing among Fishermen in his town as a result of the work by the IMC.
“I will even give the committee 299% if I am asked to rate them. They have restored sanity at the beaches. My subjects have been telling me of the works that are going on and the profits that have accrued. I can tell you on authority that 99% of the people are now happy”, the elated Paramount Chief conceded.
About two months ago, the premix committee at Elmina was dissolved and the Chief Fisherman removed on grounds that the committee had failed to render accounts to the fisher folks for over two years – a direct violation of the mandatory regulation which states that accounts be rendered quarterly.
The Fishermen also alleged that the profit realized from the sale of each tanker of premix fuel which was to be paid into the coffers of the community was not being done.
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