There are growing concerns over dead fish washing up on the coastline of Sanyang beach.
The people of Sanyang especially those earning living on the beach have called for help as they said the problem has become unbearable.
Beach bar and restaurants owners and staff have blamed the nearby fishmeal factory for the problem.
They alleged that fishermen were dumping excess fish for the plant into the sea.
“The continuous situation of dead fish being washed up on shore have greatly affected our businesses as tourists find it uncomfortable to stay and enjoy their meal [due to the stench],” one of the beach restaurant owners said.
Lamin Jawla, proprietor of Rainbow Beach bar and restaurant said: “the dead fish on shore is becoming a continuous [thing],” and alleged that fishing vessels whose “catches were not being sold to the fishmeal factory end up [being] dumped in the ocean.
”This is becoming a permanent situation at the beach and it was reported to government authorities but to no avail.
“We are seriously affected by the washing up of dead fish on the shore and this I can tell is affecting both the tourism and livelihood of the people.
“How can we allow the destruction of our beaches as a country? This is unacceptable?” he said.
Buba Sarr, a local fisherman, said that the establishment of fishmeal factories along the coastal villages has caused a series of unregulated fishing activities of fishing vessels, which he said at times dumped fish into the ocean after the factory refused to purchase their supplies.
“It is very unfair having our local market in scarcity of fish which use to be the cheapest for our people left destroyed on the shores like that.
“I feel so shocked when I receive the information of massive dead fish washed up on shore. This must stop immediately or we risk putting our country in to permanent scarcity of fish.”
The Department of Fisheries and the National Environment Agency NEA have been contacted for comment.
Reporting by Adama Makasuba