At least 19 fish wardens’ organizations received certificates of recognition for their effort against anti-illegal fishing activities.
This is one of the ways Cebu Provincial Government is strengthening the fish wardens’ associations in Cebu.
The awarding was one of the highlights during the fisherfolk summit last May 27 held at the Cebu Business Hotel.
Provincial Agriculturist Dr. Roldan Saragena said he and Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office Chief Baltazar Tribunalo Jr. believe that the fish wardens should be entitled to monthly allowances.
He stated he would present a formal proposal to the governor before the start of the Capitol’s next budgeting process for 2017.
Saragena claimed that the fish wardens are no different from barangay volunteer workers who receive annual cash incentives from the Capitol.
Illegal fishing in the province continues to persist. Saragena recalled that when they went to Kinatarcan Island in Santa Fe, Cebu together with Tribunalo two months ago, they heard explosions for 23 times from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.
When he asked a fisherman in the morning, Saragena said the fisherman told him that “normal raman na diri sir mura lang kono ug papit-an ang isda.”
Saragena said he does not know what the fisherman meant but it was just like sending a shockwave to the fish.
In other towns, illegal fishing is also widespread despite efforts of the municipal governments.
In Tudela, according to their fish wardens, they have already apprehended five groups and individual violators since January.
The other common violations in the seas are commercial fishing within the 15-kilometer municipal waters and compressor fishing.