Some of the fishermen at the press conference
Fishermen at Apam and its environs in the Central Region say the irregular supply of premix fuel is negatively affecting their livelihood.
According to them, they are unable to fish in deepwater for good catch due to the deficit in the petroleum product.
Apam has a very vast fishing community and shares its premix allocation with other fishing towns in the area, hence the 3,000 gallons per week to them is woefully inadequate.
Speaking at a press conference on Friday, Amos Appiah, 2016 Gomoa West District Best Fisherman, alleged that members of the premix fuel committee keep half of the community’s consignment for themselves and their associates, leaving many of the fishermen without fuel.
He further alleged that some members of the premix committee sell the commodity at exorbitant prices to fishermen who have no choice than to buy them at such high prices.
According to Mr. Appiah, fishermen at Apam need at least 12,000 gallons of premix fuel every week as against 9,000 gallons.
Highlighting the challenges of fishermen at Apam, Ebusuapayin Kojo Mensah, linguist of the Apam Chief Fisherman, said the product is traded like “cocaine” at the beach, adding that fishermen struggle to get it.
Some of the fishermen told Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the situation sometimes forces them to use petrol and engine oil at high cost.
The fishermen also complained about unavailability of outboard motors, saying “for almost two years now, we have not been supplied with outboard motors.”
“Many of the canoes here cannot go to sea because they have problems with their outboard motors and cannot get some to buy.”
“Even after we deposited over GH¢17,000 at Japan Motors, it will take two to three months before they supply them to us because outboard motors have become scarce,” they said.
“We all have families and we cannot stop working. It will be difficult for us to cater for our families if we do not go to sea. Government must listen to our pleas and help us,” they added.
They, therefore, appealed to the government to, as a matter of urgency, increase premix fuel allocation and provide them with other fishing implements to enable them stay in business.