Mombasa residents need to take full advantage of the Indian Ocean and benefit more from fishing, Mvita MP Abdulswamad Shariff Nassir has said. Speaking to the Star yesterday, Abdulswamad said community based organizations (CBOs) involved in the coastal ecosystem need to propose legislations that will enhance full exploitation of available resources in the coastal areas. "We are willing to support review of existing laws to benefit locals better. Despite Mvita being an island, local residents have not fully benefited from fishing both economically and dietary," said the MP. Last Thursday, some eight CBOs benefited from Sh10 million in grants from the World Bank disbursed through the Kenya Coastal Development Project . The KCDP operates under the Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (Kemfri). The grants are to enhance the management of coastal areas and to increase the proceeds realized from natural resources found in Coastal areas and in the ocean. Abdulswamad said: "We need to work with the CBOs to ensure that they get access to more grants. The work of CBOs supplements that of MPs." Last Thursday, Melckezedeck Osore, who is the KCDP Component 4 project head, said the eight groups from different parts of Mombasa county received various amounts of the grants varying from Sh500,000 to Sh1.6 million. The CBOs, mostly consisting of women and youth, are involved in projects like conservation and planting of mangrove, protection of fish landing sites, tree planting, construction of water dams and water harvesting under the natural resources management. Others include projects aimed at helping improved service delivery to local communities like solid waste management, provision of clean water and ecotourism among others. In a speech read on his behalf by Agriculture executive Anthony Njaramba during the ceremony to award the grants at Kemfri offices in Mkomani, Mombasa governor Hassan Joho said residents need to make good use of such grants. Njaramba challenged development organizations working in Mombasa county to consider putting up industries that will help locals process local cash crops before export.
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