HOUSE of representatives in Zanzibar have been cited as key drives for an ambitious Blue Economy programme in Zanzibar.
Deputy Speaker of the Zanzibar House of Representatives, Mgeni Hassan Juma, stated this when she officiated at the opening of capacity building workshop on various Blue Economy instruments’ (proposed legislation) for the Members of the Zanzibar House of Representatives.
She said the progress towards a successful Blue Economy lies on the commitment, better laws and sustainable development of socioeconomic activities including fisheries, aquaculture and tourism.
“We need to work together to ensure that the Blue Economy and fisheries benefit all as the majority of people engaging in marine resources-related activities (seaweed and sardine drying) are women.
“Policies and laws along with researches in marine are important in achieving our goals,” Ms Mgeni emphasised.
The Minister for Blue Economy and Fisheries, Mr Suleiman Masoud Makame said the purpose of meeting was to provide an opportunity for Members of the House of Representatives to understand the development, so far, in the making of policies and laws on the Blue Economy in Zanzibar.
Ministry’s Permanent Secretary Dr Aboud Suleiman and other experts from the ministry made presentations on fisheries, aquaculture, marine conservation and research legislation, saying the legislation was important in realising the Blue Economy agenda, which leaves no one behind as it included gender.
UNDP’s Tanzania Economic Adviser, Ms Weyinmi Omamuli, said UNDP is proud to be partner of the government of Zanzibar in various initiatives.
She said UNDP fully supports the Ministry of the Blue Economy and Fisheries and all its initiatives and has Blue Economy high among its priorities.
“Since 2021 UNDP has been working with the ministry through a a number of initiatives, supporting development of various instruments to enable Zanzibar achieve the Blue Economy agenda which is the pillar for Zanzibar Vision 2050 to attain middle income status by that year,” she said.
Ms Omamuli said that the Marine Protected Areas Act will ensure better protection of marine resources and related biodiversity and ecosystem necessary for an ocean-based economy.
The law provides directives on how Tanzania can protect and conserve resources to ensure sustainability of the environment.
Legislator Mr Suleiman Makame thanked the ministry and the UNDP for facilitating the seminar.
“People engaging in fishing and seaweed farming and other marine resource activities, must be involved in making laws. Their views are important in having better laws.”