After the tsunami - Fishing settlements survey: Somalia Indian Ocean coastal towns


Ref: 171/Barred/09

Barret-Net is one of the local organizations in the country recently conducted a survey over several coastal regions affected by the Tsunami storm. The survey lasted for 17 days and performed by teams from the local organization to submit fact finding to the main sectors of the fisher families whose main subsistence depended on the marine production. The villages surveyed had a total of 9,867 permanent fishermen and 7,325 seasonal fishermen the outbreak of Tsunami storm caused many fishermen to move to other parts of the country seeking for restoration of better living subsistence.

The fishermen had never formulated any associated or arranged institutions which respond to the crisis when such disaster takes place. Due to the occurrence of the civil wars which formerly destroyed their property of fishing fears and various boats their used for their survival. But later on some of them made some arrangement of reviving their sources of production and this has demonstrated some progress in the later years but Tsunami wave has completed the demolishment of the small fishing organizaed after then. On the other hand the collapse of the fishermen production was attributed to the bad management in the fishing groups.

Most of the fishermen complained different problems of which the main ones were: lack of preservation rooms for the fish production. Also the fisheries impressed by inappropriate marketing as exportation declined and can not get any brokers who offer their small production to the abroad market, some fisheries made some attempts to create their desire of united groups or cooperative that emerge for action of massive disaster but this did not achieved vas assured one of the fishermen. Some of them informed that they have the intention to renounce their marine profession as they disparaged to get source of support that enables them to bring back their functional occupation of marine production. Once pondering on how can be promoted the fishing skills the fishermen put their emphasis on making rearrangement process to escape from the murky. During the survey the monitoring team of fact finding of Tsunami damages, they met with southern coastal inhabitants of fishing community. They asserted that identical crisis as their counterparts in fishing skill.

In the field of fishing tackles the fisheries addressed that they used poor fishing gears and that was what has impaired their production. For instance the fishing nets were not suitable for catching certain marketable fishes such as sharks. The dimension of the nets they used contained of 6.2 to 8.00 with wide mesh where the catches easily penetrated through the wide mesh hole. There is not control of catches the fisheries can make due to the decayed nets. The other fishing tackles they used included to hooks and brandishing fish net with buoyancy. Although this tactic is somewhat progressive for the poor fishers who fish around the coasts and shores have no any advantage according to the boats fisheries groups.

To make recovery measures and increase of marine food production fisheries are needed to form institutions and cooperatives to unite their force and increase their production. There have been various proposal suggested by the fishery communities that included the improvement of the current situation of crisis and made determination in seeking loans to reconstruct new fishing boats. The main production the fisheries met their most financial was sharks, lobster in which the fisheries used for hooks and nets while lobster is more dangerous than catching sharks and fishes because this was to dive in seas.

Lobster which was the main source of financial income in these areas now remained under disappointment. He loss caused by tsunami storm was estimated to be reaching more than 79% and decreased the production. But there have been few fisheries who later on built wooden boats that can not afford travel to higher seas where prosperous catches of fishes are available. Production has fallen down to 65% and recovery activities have excluded from the will of the fishermen. Previously the fishers received special support from the government and international agencies that were customer to the fishermen but that has got out from hand.

Most of the fishermen apply home made storage in their residences which hygienically is not appropriate and acceptable. The sole facility remained in their hands after the wars happened in those districts and villages interrupted their production until Tsunami storm has stricken in December 2004 and destroyed their fishing facilities. Preparing and processing technical were scarce and were available in very few villages and some towns such as Gendershe, Harardere, Hobyo and Jilib Marka. The production of the processing methods consequently demonstrated poor quality and loss in the field is estimated to: 70% of demersal, 58% of pelagic, 69% of sharks caught end up devastating for the poor methods used. Fishing the main purpose for fishing is carried out for reasons of gaining income marketing the catches to the local markets and abroad but the market was not known for the acceptance of the fish catches because of the many brokers who curb the deal and marketing processes. However the fisheries have no well organized cooperatives and financial deposit to unravel their deep problems that would enable for them to restart their production.

The fishery communities complained immense loss of boats, engines, nets, traps and other dishing tools. Anyhow total loss of fiber boats are estimated to 302, 263 wooden boats and 204 engines have been perfectly lost in the Tsunami as well as required 300 fiber boats, 275 wooden boats and 200 engines to recover the loss of fishing facilities. About 50000 fishing nets need for repair and 423 traps need to renew while 605 diving masks set have been demolished in Tsunami storm. The diving equipments are all remained under complete destruction. The fishermen need to be developed in fishing aspects such as fishing techniques, engine repair, boat construction and boat operations, marketing and management, emergency response and first aid and communication processing and preservation techniques and ocean pollution control as some of the areas they need also to be awaked.

The information and other issues concerning to the fishermen setback need for immediate support to deplete the current situation of the marine food production. And improvement of fishing tackles intact reduce the current problem and missing production operations in fish catches will be kept under proper control. Conservation and administration process of the fishermen is regarded as the prime economical set up after the livestock and from that point the conspicuous production could be developed in overall. The livelihood of the fisher community restoration will render the recovery of tsunami storm losses.