Fishermen in the Bunyoro region are calling on Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to establish clear strategies for demarcating the boundaries of Lake Albert. They argue that this demarcation is urgently needed to help fishermen from both countries understand the limits of their fishing territories.   

The lack of a clear boundary has repeatedly led to tension on Lake Albert. Many Ugandan fishermen have been arrested and detained by DRC authorities due to the unclear territorial limits, resulting in disputes and unrest. The lake’s overlapping border between Uganda and Congo has created significant uncertainty.   

Godfrey Balikenda, a fisherman at Wanseko landing site in Buliisa, highlighted that the poorly defined boundaries often cause fishermen to inadvertently cross into each other’s territories, leading to conflicts. Micheal Kyaligonza, from Kitebere landing site in Kagadi, mentioned that numerous Ugandan fishermen have been arrested by Congolese authorities for allegedly fishing in Congolese waters. He believes that demarcating the boundary would resolve these issues.  

Robert Okumu, a fisherman at Kaiso landing site in Hoima District, criticized the Ugandan government for its inaction on this matter, stressing that the boundary demarcation is crucial for national security. Pius Wakabi, the Bugahya County Member of Parliament, reported that several fishermen in his constituency have been detained by Congolese authorities. 

He emphasized that clear boundaries would enable fishermen to operate within their territories, restoring peace on the lake. In 2018, leaders from the Bunyoro Subregion had already appealed to both governments to urgently address the boundary issue. They stressed that a clear demarcation would help fishermen from both Uganda and the DRC know where they can safely conduct their activities.

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