It is exactly two years since George Omuodo’s brutal confrontation with fishers from Uganda, an encounter that left him hospitalized with a broken arm and bruised ribs. After listening to his ordeal, one wonders where he gets the courage to go back to the lake every day.
Currently 30 square kilometres of Lake Victoria, which stretches to approximately 375 kilometres and links Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda, is covered with the evasive water hyacinth that has paralysed transport in the area.
But scientists are harvesting and fermenting the weed, and one intrepid chemistry teacher has built a business out of it.
In a matter of days the world’s blue economy actors and experts will converge in Nairobi, Kenya for the first ever global conference on sustainable blue economy.
Colvince Mubiru had heard about cage fish farming on Uganda’s lakes. The small business owner decided to try his hand at it and spent USD8,000 to set up farming cages for Nile Tilapia on Lake Victoria, expecting to reap a huge profit. But just six months into his enterprise, he made huge losses.
Over the years, Cassius Ntege, a fisherman from Kasenyi landing site on the Ugandan side of Lake Victoria, has observed the waters of the lake receding. And as one of the many who depend on the lake for their livelihoods, he has had to endure the disastrous consequences of the depleting lake.