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About 20 fishing boat engines stolen since beginning of 2019

Fishermen worry about the theft resurgence of fishing boat engines in Lake Tanganyika. Armed robbery is reported in Rumonge Province, in the south of Burundi. “About 20 engines have been stolen since the beginning of 2019 in Rumonge and Nyanza Lake communes of Rumonge and Makamba provinces respectively,” says N. P, one of the fishermen operating in Rumonge Commune, adding that other fishing equipment, telephones and money were also stolen.

Fishing boats at Rumonge port

The robbery is committed by people armed with rifles who allegedly come from the Democratic Republic of Congo, say fishermen. “Three robbers with one or two of them armed come in boats and attack us. After stealing us, they disappear, “says N.P

Fishermen ask the Burundian Navy to collaborate with the Congolese and Tanzanian Navy to fight these thieves. “Some fishermen have suspended their activities since their fishing boat engines were stolen,” says N.P

Juvenal Bigirimana, Governor of Rumonge Province admits that fishing boat engines were stolen at the beginning of the year. He, however, says the situation is now under control. “Unidentified people have stolen fishing boat engines in Karonda and Kigwena areas at the beginning of the year, but, no act of robbery has recently been reported in Rumonge Province,” says Bigirimana.

He calls on fishermen to continue collaborating with the administration and security forces in strengthening security in Lake Tanganyika by implementing recommendations made during security meetings. The governor warns thieves arguing that strong measures to protect fishermen have been implemented and reassures Rumonge people that their security is effectively guaranteed.