Lwanginga River: When the fish runs low

MUYAPEKWA Muyunda buys and smokes fish for sale in Lusaka

FISHERMEN and fish traders in Mongu district, Western Province, are slowly realising that the Lwanginga River can no longer provide them with huge stocks of fish and a livelihood. Something has changed.
Mulonda Nyambe of Shungwe village has been a fisherman for as long as he can remember, ploughing the river in his dugout canoe.
Nyambe, who is a descendent of fishermen, learned his fishing skills from his father when he was a little boy. He now uses his skill to fend for his own family of eight.
“I have been a fisherman as long as I can remember,” said Nyambe. “I find peace on the water, but as conditions have changed, so have the fish. This year, however, has been good for my business because the river was heavily flooded and I have had so much to fish unlike in the past years.”
However, he is worried about the future of the fisheries because of the uncertainities in the weather pattern that often result in either floods or drought.
Nyambe is also concerned that some fishermen are still using poor fishing methods, contributing to the depletion of fish in the river.
Nyambe uses two boats, placing the fishing net in the middle and also a dragnet for fishing.
Once he harvests the fish, Nyambe has a ready market on the banks of the river. Namangolwa Pelekelo is a fish trader who buys fish from fishermen like Nyambe on the banks of the river. She started the business in 2000.
“I make my livelihood from fish trading to meet the daily needs of my family. I’m also able to take my children to school and CLICK TO READ MORE

Facebook Feed