Crime

FISHERMAN JUMPS TO HIS DEATH IN FEAR OF FPU PERSONNEL ON LAKE ALBERT

By Pascal Onega

HOIMA: Fishermen in Hoima District have been left in shock following the death of their own who drown in fear of being arrested by the Fisheries Protection Unit-FPU personnel.

The deceased identified as Gubaaza Rugongeza 25, a resident of Kapapi 2 village in Kapapi sub county Hoima District was attached to Runga Landing.

The incident happened on Wednesday at around 2am and it’s reported that after seeing an approaching crew of FPU personnel, the deceased jumped into the water.

”There were four in the boat, Rugongeza jumped in fear of being arrested by the FPU,” the source said.

In an exclusive interview with our reporter on Thursday evening, the Kapapi sub county LC3 Chairperson Fred Mbabazi said those who survived, narrated that as they were fishing, they saw the FPU operatives approaching them with a speedy moving boat, Rugongeza jumped into the lake since he was panicking.

The three survivors remained calm and were arrested then later on freed.

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A team of local leader’s and fishermen teamed up and retrieved the body on Thursday evening and it was handed over to the relatives for burial.

However, Mbabazi together with his counterpart in Kiganja Sub County blames the FPU operators for conducting the operations at night saying it’s so risky to the lives of fishermen.

FPU has not yet commented on the matter as our repeated phone calls to the spokesperson FPU went unanswered.

Since August 2021, the FPU operatives have been conducting operations against illegal fishing gear on the Lake Albert waters.

The operation is targeting undersized boats, fishing nets, hooks and monofilament nets among others.

In September last year, FPU impounded and destroyed more than 300,000 pieces of illegal fishing gear countrywide.

The destroyed fishing gear included boats, monofilament nets, solar batteries, bulbs, hooks, and immature fish among others.

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