Member organisations of the World Forum of Fisher Peoples (WFFP) will participate in various activities to mark World Fisheries Day on 21 November.
In South Africa, Masifundise and Coastal Links South Africa are hosting a gender workshop in Paternoster, Western Cape.
World Fisheries Day was established to draw attention to overfishing, pollution of the ocean, habitat destruction and other serious threat to the world’s marine and freshwater resources.
It serves as a reminder that the world has to drastically change its way of managing global fisheries to ensure sustainable stocks and healthy oceans ecosystems.
A UN study has revealed the following: “More than two-thirds of the world’s fisheries have been overfished or are fully harvested and more than one third are in a state of decline because of factors such as the loss of essential fish habitats, pollution and global warming”.
Fisheries are important for the following reasons, among others;
- Fisheries and aquaculture employ more than 43 million individuals worldwide
- More than 25% of the world’s dietary protein is provided by fish
- The human population consumes over 100 million metric tons of fish annually.
Activities will take the form of workshops, cultural programmes, exhibitions and awareness programmes.
As fisherfolk mark World Fisheries Day around the globe, the WFFP wants to once again bring world attention to the dangers of Ocean Grabbing. This entails the privatisation of marine and land resources by powerful and wealthy elites, at the expense of small-scale fishing communities.
WFFP furthermore reiterates its call for the rapid implementation of the International Guidelines on Small-scale fisheries that was adopted in Rome earlier this year.
In a media release this week, WFFP General Secretary Naseegh Jaffer said: “The Guidelines give recognition to the small-scale sector and provides a comprehensive framework for sustainable livelihoods, gender equity and the protection of the environment.”
“We have made a call on our 40 member organisations worldwide to help create awareness of the destructive threats to our oceans and to advocate strongly for the solutions contained in the International Guidelines,” said Jaffer.