Three fishermen are in the grip of the Denu Police in the Volta Region for fishing during the closed season.
They have been identified as Atitso Atsitsogbui, Seth Kwesi Abelia and Agbesi Atisu, while some of their accomplices who fled upon seeing members of the closed season monitoring team are being pursued.
The fish they had caught on their fishing expedition were retrieved while the canoe they were using has been impounded.
The canoe, with registration number VR-KS-086-AVM, is said to have the inscription Holy FM on it.
They were arrested during a joint operation by the officials of the Eastern Naval Command and the Fisheries Enforcement Unit (FEU), the Monitoring Control Surveillance Division (MCSD) and the Marine Police.
Briefing the Daily Graphic about the arrest, the Head of the Public Relations Unit of the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Karimatu Anas, said the fishermen were arrested at Abeliakope in the Ketu South District on July 12, 2023.
She said the team was visiting landing beaches as part of an exercise to ensure that artisanal, semi-industrial vessels and industrial vessels were observing the season.
The exercise started from the landing beach in Keta, and continued to the Ketu South District where the team picked up intelligence that some artisanal fishermen had gone fishing.
She commended the team that arrested the fishermen who flouted the law.
To ensure that fishermen are complying with the fishing closed season, she said the Fisheries Enforcement Unit had been visiting a number of fishing communities.
In the Greater Accra Region, the team last Saturday visited Chorkor, James Town, Teshie, Nungua, Sakumono, Tema New Town and the Tema Fishing Harbour.
The team, led by the National Coordinator for the FEU, Commodore Francis Nyarko, and the Director for the Monitoring Control Surveillance Division, Richard Yeboah, on July 12 and 13, 2023, also patrolled the various landing beach sites, including Blekusu, Agavedzi, Salakope, Adina and Hedzranawo in the Volta Region.
She said but for the arrest in the Ketu South District, it was observed that all the communities monitored were complying with the closed season as all the canoes at the beaches were berthed and the fishermen were either busy mending their nets or working on their boats.
During the exercise, she said, the team took the opportunity to interact with the fishermen and sensitised them to the need to stop illegal fishing practices, including light fishing, the use of inappropriate gear such as small mesh size (poly), monofilament nets, catching of juveniles.
The team, Ms Anas said, found that the beaches were cleaner and calmer than during fishing seasons.
Commodore Francis Nyarko commended them for observing the closed season and urged them to continue to comply with the law and also desist from the use of monofilament nets and other illegal fishing activities when the season resumed.