Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Local fishermen brace for a bumper harvest

Local fishermen across the country especially those trading on dry lands are headed for good days ahead as the country is expected to receive good rains this summer rainy season.

Stretching his fishing net along the road in between electric poles in Old Naledi location, Zwine as he is commonly known by his peer rivals, has just finished selling some of his few catch from Thursday morning.

Plying their trade in the dwindling Gaborone dam, Zwine is one of the common sights of young men lining the tarred road near the dam each and every day.

They are trying to sell their catch to the potential customers from work or heading to the bustling Game City mall- a stone’s throw away.

“Fish are hard to find these dry days as they have gone deep, chased away by the scorching heat. Life is terrible for us,” Zwine said, lamenting “I have just sold all my small catch this morning.”

He will later go watch movies at a neighbor’s home as there is nothing to do for the day.
But the announcements by the weather bureau of late that the country will experience a considerable amount of downpour, coupled with recent showers, bring hope to the unemployed Zwine.

“There is nothing that entered the dam but we will keep hoping,” he said about the recent showers.

Like the rest of the unemployed fishermen in the area, Zwine blames the mushrooming of farms around Gaborone dam by the elite whites and their black cronies, some of whom are engaged in game farming for the low catchment in the dam.

A seasoned fisherman, Zwine has known the dam for many years and used to accommodate a lot of water long before the encroachment of the farms in the vicinity.

“Should they let the water free, we will be back to our bustling business …our economic mainstay of life,” he said.

Zwine is just waiting for the anticipated rains to come and for the water to spill into the Gaborone dam, supplying the entire Gaborone City and neighboring villages with drinkable water.

For the surface flowing water to reach the dam, the thirty year old Thamaga born resident insists the tributaries have to fill the elites dams first before spilling into Gaborone dam.
They use the water for their tamed animals.

Zwine believes the move is wrong considering water is appallingly needed by the population as the Water Utilities Corporation imposes water rationing.

Should the weather forecasts come true, Zwine is ready for the eventuality as evidenced by his early monitoring check on his fishing net for any defects well before time.

Radithupa Radithupa’s reading of weather forecasts on national television has reassured the public of a considerable amount of rain, prompting farmers and fisherman alike to prepare for a good time this summer rainy season.

Fishing this time around closes in January to allow species to breed, giving the fishermen ample time to do their trade conveniently in the build to the festive season.

In the impoverished location of Old Naledi, most of the residents are unemployed, forcing the male youths to venture into the risky deep water trade which could claim their lives.
On a typically good day, Zwine could walk home with P400 in his pocket.


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