CAP urges the Fisheries Department of Kedah and the Maritime Enforcement Agency of Malaysia to investigate and take immediate action to resolve the problem caused by pukat siput boats that is threatening the livelihood of coastal fishers in Yan. The income of more than 300 coastal fishers has been severely affected due to this problem.
The fishers operating the pukat siput boats conduct their activities at night and have polluted the fishing zone of coastal fishers. These pukat siput boats are based in Kuala Sungai Yan, Tanjung Dawai and Kuala Kedah.
Sea water in Zone A has become foul, resulting in the dwindling of fish and prawns that are the main catch of coastal fishers here.
At the same time, the pukat siput also traps and kills juvenile fish and hence disrupts its cycle of growth and breeding which will eventually lead to the extinction of fisheries resources in the future.
Two years ago, a similar problem was faced by coastal fishers in Kuala Kedah where many nets belonging to coastal fishers were damaged due to the operations of the pukat siput boats in that area. There were also cases of fishers coming home empty-handed without any catch.
CAP is disappointed that although this problem has been dragging for more than 20 years, but until now the use of pukat siput still continues.
If this situation continues unchecked without close monitoring and effective action by the relevant authorities, it will seriously threat fisheries resources and livelihood of affected coastal fishers in the future.
CAP requests the Fisheries Department of Kedah to revoke the permits issued for this purpose and not issue any new permits until a study proves that the use of pukat siput does not cause adverse impacts to the environment, fishery resources and livelihood of coastal fishers here.
Based on the information and complaints to CAP received from coastal fishers, we are of the view that the use of pukat siput must be banned because it raises many problems to coastal fishers and fishery resources in the waters of the state.
Press Statement – 8 April 2014