The Sunday Leader

Fishermen Face Huge Losses

By Camelia Nathaniel

The fishing community is facing huge losses with the Department of Meteorology issuing weather advisories since last Monday warning of dangerous sea conditions.

Head of the National Fisheries Solidarity Movement (NAFSO) Herman Kumara told The Sunday Leader that in one anchorage point comprising 90 boats in the Matara area alone, the estimated average loss of revenue is around Rs. 1.5 million per day. There are approximately 15,000 small fishing boats operating around the country.

He further added that only some of the families of fishermen who lost their lives during the storm last Saturday had received the total compensation package of Rs. 100,000.

“Although this amount has been promised it is only a cabinet decision so far. Moreover only some of the families who have insurance cover are to be given the full amount and for those who are not insured, it will only be half that amount,” he said. Meanwhile the Minister of Fisheries Dr Rajitha Senaratne said that it is not practical to provide life jackets to all the 175,000 fishermen in the country. “It is a huge expense to provide life jackets to all the fishermen in the country, and it is not a practical solution. However we provide life jackets to the various fisheries societies.

The individual fishermen should also take precautions and take into consideration their own safety. Even if we enforce laws making it compulsory to wear life jackets, these fishermen will only wear them until they leave the fishing harbour and then take them off. Moreover expecting the Navy to monitor them while at sea is also impractical,” he said.

1 Comment for “Fishermen Face Huge Losses”

  1. Paan Kiriththa

    No minister takes the responsibility ! Mr. President you are running this country like looking after a set of animals. Please tell the responsible officers or politicians to get out from the government of from the respective institutions.

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