Fishing resources

Depletion of fishery resources worsens dispute between residents of Cameroon and Chad


Along the Logone River, shared by Cameroon and Chad, fishermen practice artisanal fishing.

The inhabitants of here live mainly from fishing, a resource which is becoming increasingly scarce.

After six hours of fishing, Ahmadou Baba, a Chadian fisherman, returns to the banks of the river with few catches.

“When I was a kid, you could just fish with hooks. Now people go from afar like Oussi in Leena over there, to fish. Before, when we went out like that, women even came here, and they could have fish. Now there are no more fish there, ”Ahmadou said.

The scarcity of fishery resources has become a source of tension between the two communities, who accuse each other of using unsuitable fishing gear. They claim that some fishing nets are extremely extensive and large.

“Our studies show that there are several + problems. Cohabitation is a problem, access to fishery resources is becoming scarce. In addition to being rare, fishing practices are gradually becoming illegal with the use of unsuitable fishing gear, which is suitable for fishing. People are now experiencing low catches and there is also a resurgence of conflicts ”, a said Armel Mewouth, coordinator of the bridge project at the Lake Chad Basin Commission.

Faced with these various conflicts, the Cameroonian and Chadian authorities, within the Lake Chad Basin Commission, met in Bongor, a Chadian border town located two kilometers from the Cameroonian town of Yagoua.

Meetings were held with local residents, especially fishermen. Authorities in both countries called on fishermen to calm down and live together.

“You could say that there are resources, only that people do not respect environmental sustainability, because we are still signing an order banning fishing from July 1 to September 30. So, it’s three months and it’s this period that we called biological rest, to allow the fish to reproduce. And there are people who cheat at night, they go fishing “, revealed Manou Diguir, a commissioner.

The commission further recommended that those who live along the Logone River also practice agriculture so as not to deplete fishery resources.