Victor Yemba – On the side of small-scale fishers

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Genova, Italy

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June 29th at 12:00 in your time zone

Free event

The Democratic Republic of Congo is one of the largest countries in Africa both in terms of its area and population, as well as being the largest officially-Francophone country in the world. Its colonial and post-colonial history have been marred by ongoing destructive conflicts and violence, particularly in the east of the country.

The Congo River from which the country takes its name is the second-largest river by volume in the world, as well as the deepest, and provides a living to traditional fishing communities along its length. It’s biodiversity rich and little-studied, with at least 800 fish species recorded and many more yet to be described.

Victor Yemba is a member of a fishing community in Kisangani, the furthest navigable point upriver, over 2000km from the ocean. As he explains, these fishers are victims of exclusion from decision-making processes that affect their livelihoods, and a lack of security exposes them to rebel attacks, especially those fishing on the edge of the lakes in the Congo’s east, like Lake Kivu.

As Victor says, action is needed if these fishing communities are to live in peace. “It won’t be today or tomorrow, but with ongoing pressure on the government, and political will to help these local, small-scale fishing communities, can we hope to achieve a more sustainable future.”

The Food Talks are digital format for Slow Fish 2021: ten minutes talks on the environment, fishing and food: a collective framework of the future we want and need. The protagonists of the Food Talks are fishers who, together with anthropologists, ecologists and experts, offer their vision of the seas, their problems and potential solutions. Food Talks are supported by UniCredit.

Ph. iStock Photo by Getty Images | thierry64

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Event languages: IT, EN, FR

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