Strong Winds Force Fishermen Out Of Lake Victoria

2662 Views Rakai town, Uganda

In short
Fishing activities have been suspended at several landing sites in Rakai due to strong winds on Lake Victoria. The most affected landing sites are Kasensero and Nangoma. Currently, Lake Victoria is experiencing strong winds.

Fishing activities have been suspended at several landing sites in Rakai due to strong winds on Lake Victoria.
 
The most affected landing sites are Kasensero and Nangoma. Currently, Lake Victoria is experiencing strong winds.
 
John Kayumba, the Chairman Kasensero Landing site Beach Management Unit, says since May strong winds have been sweeping across Lake Victoria waters which put fishing boats at risk of capsizing. Kayumba says for safety purposes, over 200 fishermen have suspended fishing activities until strong winds calm down. He says they expect the lake to calm down in August.
 
Uganda Radio Network has found at least 150 boats grounded at Kasensero with many fishermen gambling while other watch films. Some fishermen have also resorted to spending most of their time drinking. The fishermen say Lake Victoria is now rough and that they cannot risk to go fishing. 
 
David Luyinda, the Kyebe Sub County Fisheries officer, says all those fishermen who go into the lake do it at their own risk. He says majority of them do not have life jackets which exposes them to risks of drowning.
 
Luyinda tells Uganda Radio Network that the suspension of fishing is affecting revenue collection in the district.
 
 
Noah Sserungoji, the greater Masaka region Police spokesperson, says police is advising fishermen and travellers around the region to use life jackets. He says Lake Victoria is also rough in Kalangala, adding that police has intensified patrols on Lake Victoria to guard against overloading of canoes.
  
Isaac Mugera, the Kalangala District Information Officer, says strong winds have forced district leaders to suspend travelling to distant islands.  He identifies some of the distant Islands as Mazinga, Lujabwa, Nkose, Nkese and Kisaba.
  
He says due to rough waters, the district cannot carry out any activity at any of these distant Islands because they are inaccessible.
  
In 2010, over 30 passengers died when a boat on which they were travelling capsized. The accident occurred at Nsaze village in Bubeke Sub County when the boat heading to Kasenyi in Entebbe was hit by strong winds.
 
Boat accidents on Lake Victoria are common between June and August because of strong winds on the lake.

 

About the author

Edward Bindhe
Bindhe prides himself on being a part of the society he writes about. He believes there is no way a journalist can understand his society unless it considers him a part of it. This is why he is dedicated to investigating the challenges of the "little person."

Bindhe says, "My work reflects the Uganda Radio Network unique approach to news." Not many Ugandan journalists would consider or even notice the re-emergence of Water Hyacinth on a lake. Bindhe does.

Truant children will attract Bindhe's attention until he gets to the bottom of their truancy: poverty and the need to work to earn bread for their families. These are the kinds of stories Bindhe is often after.

Edward Bindhe is the Masaka URN bureau chief. Rakai, Lwengo, Lyantonde, Kalangala, Mpigi, Kalungu, Bukomansimbi and Sembabule districts fall under his docket. He has been a URN staff member since 2009.

A Mass Communication graduate from Uganda Christian University, Bindhe started practising journalism in 2008 as a reporter for Radio Buddu in Masaka district.