Seminars Successfully Completed to Improve Ministry of Fisheries Staff Capacity
Somaliland has a long coast line of 850 km along the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean. These waters are home to various species of fish. Unfortunately, Somaliland fishermen are currently capturing less than 5% of the estimated sustainable fish stock in Somaliland.
To promote fish production, improve living conditions of the Somaliland people and create job opportunities, the Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) through the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources has allocated funds to implement the Strengthening Fisheries Management and Production Capacity Project.
The fisheries project is focused on three key objectives with capacity building of ministry staff considered as a main objective. Due to the shortage of qualified staff at the Ministry, there is a clear need for training. The fisheries project has carried out four trainings in Berbera and Erigavo and three more are planned for Sanaag. Since these trainings have largely benefitted field staff of the MoFMR, the seminars were carried out to build capacity of headquarters staff and provide them with an overview of pertinent topics in fisheries. The seminars were carried out over a six-month period from February to the beginning of July in 2017.
The Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Mr. Ali Jama Farah, attended the closing event and handed out certificates together with the Project Manager.
He stated: “I am very delighted to attend this seminar today as the last one of 19. I want to congratulate everyone who participated. This training was carried out on significant topics in fisheries providing certain areas of knowledge to help improve your current work.”
"You have definitely received an overview that you could not get anywhere else, since the country has no universities and schools to learn to fish. This training has offered a lot of knowledge about fisheries, “ the Minister added.
Muse Yusuf Ibrahim, a participant and Assistant Director of the Planning Department of the Ministry of Fisheries said, “The seminars were launched in February and ended in July 2017. There were 19 in total. The seminars were very important to me because of the long period that we partipated in them, while other trainings were short, and that makes the difference.”
“I remember in 2015 I attended a workshop about fisheries, organized by a local NGO. I had no fisheries background at that time. I could not understand the presentations during the training sessions which made me unable to answer the questions following the training discussions. Now I have better knowledge about the fisheries and am ready to apply what I have learned,” Muse continued to explain.
“This training has really given me confidence to influence my duties, as well as provided all participants with a lot of knowledge on the value of fish and its different kinds. Thank you to the SDF and the Ministry team who helped and contributed to making this training a fabulous success,” Muse concluded.
Asraar Abdullahi Adam, emplyed at the Ministry of Fisheries' M&E Department, received her certificate for completing the seminars (2nd from left).
Explaining the importance of the training she said: “As I am a new employee, it makes me really happy to have participated and I am very fortunate to have had the opportunity to be educated on something I am interested in. Each session presented important topics in fisheries, prepared by a different participant and that made the training unique.”
“The communication barrier between me and the fishermen during our meetings in Berbera was the biggest challenge I have had during my work. I could not understand when they were explaining something about the fish, but now I am well educated and will understand,” Asraar concluded.
The SDF is a 4-year fund designed to support the Government of Somaliland (GoSL) filling a critical gap funding projects that are fully aligned to the National Development Plan (NDP). The SDF is currently funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), and the Governments of Norway and The Netherlands.