The delayed release of funds by partners states to finance the activities of the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization-LVFO has slowed research on East Africa’s largest shared water body. LVFO is mandated to conduct studies on the different aspects of Lake Victoria with funding from the subscriber states.
Each state is required to pay annual subscription fees of US$ 485,000. The funds facilitate studies that guide countries on how best to preserve the different Lake Victoria species from extinction. The member states include Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Burundi.
However, none of the partner states has cleared her annual subscription fees this financial year, which has affected attempts to apply modern technologies to conduct viable studies about the ever-changing eco systems across Lake Victoria and how such aspects are impacting the safety of different fish species within the lake.
Speaking in an interview with URN on Wednesday, LVFO’s Deputy Executive Secretary, Anthony Taabu, said that only Uganda has managed to pay US$ 93,000, which accounts for about 20% of their annual subscription fees.
He says that the rest of the partner states are still silent. Taabu says that they are currently incapacitated to pay salaries and utility bills, which is affecting the smooth operations of the organization.
Taabu further reveals that LVFO’s target research areas have since stalled, adding that they are currently relying on donations from development partners whose funding is restricted to specific projects.
LVFO’s Executive Secretary, Shigala Mahongo says that efforts are underway to engage Uganda’s East Africa Affairs Minister, Rebecca Kadaga to ensure that she rallies her counterparts from other partner states to fulfil their mandate.