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In Marshall, Margibi County  EJF dedicates Fishers’ Office Building and Solar Power System in supporting community efforts to tackle illegal fishing    

In Marshall, Margibi County EJF dedicates Fishers’ Office Building and Solar Power System in supporting community efforts to tackle illegal fishing   

 

The Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF), with funding from the European Union through the Communities for Fisheries project, will on today, Friday, May 13, 2022 dedicate a modern building and solar power system to the Collaborative Management Association (CMA) in Margibi, Liberia.

As part of the dedication ceremony, six recently elected leaders of the CMA will be inaugurated into office for a two-year tenure. This newly established CMA will be based in Marshall and represent the fishing communities of Margibi county. This is the 3rd association of its kind in the country following the ones in Grand Cape Mount and Montserrado.

The building, which has a large conference room and two offices, all fully furnished, along with the 3000W off-grid solar system, is part of the Communities for Fisheries project’s effort to enhance the operational and administrative efficiency of the CMA. The CMA will work with the Liberian government to manage the country’s fisheries for improved food security and to protect coastal livelihoods. The fisheries sector in Liberia supports over 33,000 people including 11,000 fishers directly employed by the sector.

The four-year Communities for Fisheries project, which is implemented in the fishing communities around Grand Cess in Grand Kru, Robertsport in Grand Cape Mount, Buchanan in Grand Bassa and Marshall in Margibi county, builds on the significant progress made by the National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority (NaFAA) in improving the sustainable management of Liberia’s fisheries.  

Despite the marked progress made, the top-down approach has proven inadequate to address the complex nature of fisheries management. That is why the new concept of co-management is important. Co-management builds on the notion that resource users are most affected by regulations and should therefore be involved in resource management. Recognising the benefits of co-management, NaFAA has legalised the concept of collaborative management, which recognises, organises, and authorises fishers themselves to get directly involved in the management of fisheries resources, thus reducing the financial and logistical burden on the government.

The benefits of collaboratively managing fisheries include: the resource users obtaining a sense of ownership, securing the ability and authority to develop and implement a fisheries management plan themselves and gaining the government’s support and recognition, all while stopping the use of destructive fishing methods and monitoring and reporting all forms of illegal fishing. This arrangement ensures success for both the government and the citizens.

The building and off-grid solar system will ensure that the CMA can function effectively by contributing to the fisheries management objectives of NaFAA, and the overall goal of the Communities for Fisheries project – supporting sustainable and legal fisheries - in Liberia.

The dedication and inauguration ceremony will take place  today, Friday, May 13, 2022, in Marshall, Margibi County, and will be graced by the Director-General of NaFAA Hon. Glassco, representatives of the European Union, local government officials, youth leaders, and key stakeholders in the fisheries sector, amongst others.

 

 

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