Kenya is moving ahead to ratify three key conventions to promote safety and efficiency in fishing,training of fishers as well as welfare of fishers.
Kenya Maritime Authority (KMA) Acting Director General, John Omingo said Kenya believes that the Cape Town Agreement of 2012 aims at ensuring fishers rights are upheld.
Omingo said that the fisheries sector is one of the key drivers towards food security and therefore KMA has been at the forefront in collaboration with the State Department for Shipping and Maritime Affairs in proposing the ratification of the three conventions.
Omingo said that the State Department of Shipping and Maritime Affairs and KMA have sought collaboration of other relevant Ministries, departments and agencies to ensure that the conventions are ratified in a timely manner to ensure the Big 4 Agenda and food security are achieved while ensuring that fishing vessels are safely operated and the fishers rights protected.
He made the remarks during the launch of Kenya owned fishing vessel, FV Ra-Horakhthy at the Liwatoni Fisheries Complex over the weekend.
”Indeed in efforts to end hunger, achieve food security and improve nutrition as well as promote sustainable agriculture, Sustainable Development Goal (SDG2) and feed its growing population, the government launched the Big 4 Agenda that is a five year programme that seeks to achieve rapid results,”Omingo noted.
Under the Big 4, emphasis is on manufacturing, Universal Health Coverage, affordable housing and food security.
He commended the Kenyan investor for the vessel adding that it was encouraging to have Kenyans get gainful employment.
“Employment creation for the Kenyan fishers is paramount for poverty reduction and to a large extent food security. We therefore welcome the decision by owners and directors of FV Ra -Horakhty to register their vessel in Kenya and we encourage employment of Kenyan fishers onboard the ship,” he said.
During the launch ceremony, Presidential Blue Economy Implementation committee chairman, Gen (rtd) Samson Mwathethe witnessed the entry of 11 Kenyan seafarers who had been recruited to work aboard the fishing vessel.
Mwathethe wished the crew of the vessel safe seas as they embarked on their fishing voyage in the deep waters of the Indian Ocean.