Malawi govt frustrates fishing industry: Fisheries college closure clocks 6 months

Malawi College of Fisheries in Mangochi has been non-operational for about half a year now following its closure in April due to fiscal incapacitation, Nyasa Times has established.

Fanwell with a catch of chambo fish. Photo credit RIPPLE Africa

Fanwell with a catch of chambo fish. Photo credit RIPPLE Africa

The closure reflects badly on government’s commitment towards ensuring the efficiency of the fisheries department.

Despite falling under the Ministry of Agriculture, the department received funding that was unable to support less than thirty students.

“We have been home for about six months now,” one of the students who opted for anonymity told Nyasa Times. “We had problems of food and other basic necessities that government is supposed to provide to us.”

Apparently, most of the students that go to the college are already government employees who go there for refresher or upgrading courses.

Well-placed sources at the college confessed that funding to the institution has been a mess.

“There is no will to support the institution on the part of government. It is frustrating,” one senior member of staff at the college said.

Director of Fisheries in the Ministry of Agriculture could not immedietely comment.

Nyasa Times has learnt that the institution has continued to receive minute funding from the Ministry for the last few years which resulted in it having limited teaching and learning materials.

An anonymous visit to the college by this reporter revealed that the college has a single old modelled computer in its computer laboratory with its library crammed with outdated publications – most before 1980.

There was no internet access on the campus.

According to students, there is need for government to start offering diplomas after their two year period of training saying the award of a certificate was an “insult.”

Despite the situation, the fishing industry in Malawi generated jobs for more than four hundred thousand people and supports more than two millions households – directly and indirectly – according to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Malawi’s annual economic report by the Ministry of Finance, Development and Economic Planning indicates that in 2010 Malawi exported 11 781 kilograms of aquarium fish which generated revenue amounting to MK21 474 834.

 

 

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3 thoughts on “Malawi govt frustrates fishing industry: Fisheries college closure clocks 6 months”

  1. Material says:

    Why not commercialize the college? Private and international students can take up the places at commercial fees.

  2. Wedson Gonani says:

    Does fisheries exist in Malawi? what are they doing with fish species from Lake Chirwa which has almost dries? I am worried of the rich biodiversity it has, will just die a natural death. Any plan so far you the experts in fisheries department?

  3. kings says:

    This government does its priorities up side down, there is no way you can keep students off the campus for four months due to financial constraints yet the same government mobilises resources for mhlakho wa hlomwe which one of the two is so beneficial to the nation? Stupidity at its best.

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