11/06/2020, 17.44
SRI LANKA
Send to a friend

Fishermen say COVID-19 is not passed on by fish

by Melani Manel Perera

Sales collapsed after a viral outbreak at a Colombo fish market. Activists urge the authorities to counter public disinformation. Fishing industry workers are unable to pay debts. Advocates want the government to provide refrigerated sites and buy unsold stock.

Colombo (Asia News) – Sri Lankan fisherman have started a campaign to inform the public that COVID-19 is not transmitted from fish to humans.

Fishing industry advocacy groups also urge the government to take steps to protect the fishing industry from the effects of the pandemic.

After a COVID-19 outbreak was reported in Colombo’s Peliyagoda Fish Market, fish sales collapsed as a result of fears that fish could spread the pulmonary virus.

In a statement released yesterday, advocacy groups called on the authorities to support fishermen and launch an information campaign on the real dangers posed by the coronavirus.

They stress that the government action must be immediate to prevent hunger and starvation among workers in the fishing industry and their families.

According to Herman Kumara, national coordinator of the National Fisheries Solidarity Organization, and special guest at the World Fishermen's Forum, misinformation about the spread of COVID-19 has caused enormous damage to fishermen.

He wants the government to remedy this situation. "Small fishermen are unable to sell what they catch and also have difficulty in carrying out their business due to the curfew,” he told AsiaNews.

Indeed, fishermen “are facing a massive crisis,” said Jude Vianny, a multi-day trawler fisherman from Kudamaduwella, Chilaw. Fishermen “are unable to repay the loans they contracted to go fishing.” For this reason, “The government should intervene in this matter as soon as possible.”

Vianny explains that a fishing trip of several days can cost at least 1.1 million rupees (almost US$ 6,000). He complains that the authorities are not buying the unsold stock, nor providing refrigeration sites to store it.

Echoing his demands, advocacy groups urge the government to help out in this time of crisis by buying the fish at a fair price.

Send to a friend
Printable version
CLOSE X
See also
Protest against press censorship
24/01/2007
First Fukushima fish shipment delivered to Bangkok
06/03/2018 11:19
Pakistan’s largest lake destroyed by pollution
10/12/2016 12:22
Ky Anh, 4 thousand Catholics beaten by police for protesting against enviornmental disaster
17/08/2016 09:48
Chemicals in the sea: thousands of people without food
03/05/2016 09:13


Newsletter

Subscribe to Asia News updates or change your preferences

Subscribe now
“L’Asia: ecco il nostro comune compito per il terzo millennio!” - Giovanni Paolo II, da “Alzatevi, andiamo”