Plugging financial leakages: Fishermen Cooperative Society forms five panels
December 19, 2012
The Fishermen Cooperative Society (FCS) has formed five committees to plug financial leakages and increase revenue, besides monitoring fisheries’ affairs to pave a path for EU inspection, Office-bearers of the society said on Tuesday. The EU imposed a ban on Pakistan’s seafood in 2007, FCS directors said, adding that the ban had badly hit the local fisheries sector.
They said that the newly-elected board of the society would make fresh efforts to help the country resume exports to the EU. “The FCS has set up five committees to ensure better management of fisheries,” they said. The committees are: fisheries market management committee, co-operation committee, commission regularisation committee, controlling illegal sales and auction of seafood and regulatory committee for seafood landing.
The first committee will look after issues relating to the seafood market, besides making regular efforts to streamline all related matters. The second one is assigned to resolve the mole holders’ financial issues and increase commission revenue. The third one is responsible for maintaining good relationship with government departments, including Karachi Fish Harbour Authority, Marine Fisheries Department and Sindh Fisheries Department.
The fourth one had been appointed to stop illegal sales and auctioning of seafood, besides stopping commission theft and the last one to play the role of a regulator to improve seafood landing. According to the sources, the FCS currently earned Rs 150 million per year which it spent on fishermen’s welfare including their children’s education, community-based health provision and protection of livelihood.
“Unfortunately, the FCS despite earning such a huge amount every year, spends so little on the betterment of local fishermen,” they said, adding that fishermen across the city and Balochistan’s coast had to bear their own expenses. “The EU officials have cancelled their visits to the fish harbour several times and there is no hope of such a move any time soon,” they said, adding that situation at the harbour was poor.
Acknowledging misuse of funds, FCS directors said that the misuse had grown over the years because of various administrative constraints. There was also the matter of a large number of ‘ghost employees’ who drained at least Rs 5 million a year from the FCS kitty, the sources said.