Home » Judicial » 14 Poachers Arrested in Kariba

At least 14 suspected fish poachers were arrested recently and three fishing rigs recovered on Lake Kariba in an early morning raid that also saw the arrest of fishermen using prohibited nets.

The development comes amid reports that fish stocks in the lake are dwindling with experts yet to zero-in on the cause.

The names of the arrested have not been released, but police confirmed the arrest in an operation carried out by the Matusadona Anti-Poaching Project and the police border control unit. Of the 14, eight were arrested at Kings Camp while using illegal twine nets and dombola which is used to drive the fish into the nets.

The Matusadona Anti-Poaching Project confirmed the arrest on its Facebook page

“Fishermen in Kariba catch much more fish using the illegal twine nets and are destroying the fish population as a result,” reads the post.

“The twine nets are becoming the norm and are now used by most fishermen in Kariba.”

After the eight were arrested another six were later arrested with three kapenta fishing rigs in unauthorised waters, while three unlicensed fishing boats were impounded.

From an annual catch of about 20 000 tonnes of kapenta in 1999, the figures have dropped to around 9 000 tonnes in recent years, leading to massive retrenchments, while some companies are closing.

The decline in kapenta and other fish stocks has been attributed to overfishing.

Acting provincial police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Ian Kohwera confirmed the arrest of the 14 fish poachers without giving further details.

Source : The Herald