The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says it will by the close of this week make public findings of the circumstances that led to the washing ashore of various fish species along the country’s coastline.
According to the Executive Director of the Agency, Henry Kokofu, samples gathered from the beaches are currently being taken through laboratory analysis.
The fish were washed ashore last Friday under bizarre circumstances.
Speaking to Citi News, the EPA Head said the agency is firmly in charge of the situation.
“We would like to avert the fears of the public that everything is under control. Samples have been taken from Axim and other coastal lines to the nearest laboratory to be looked at. The EPA is forming a team of investigators which will include persons in academia. We are not doubting any information. We have taken everything in its own stride and by close of the week, we would be able to tell exactly what has happened.”
The fish were found along the shores of the Osu Castle beach in Accra and ashore at the Axim-Bewire beach in the Nzema East Municipality on Sunday.
The Ministry of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development is coordinating an inter-agency investigation into the reported incidents.
The agencies probing the incident comprise the Fisheries Commission, Food and Drugs Authority, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Ghana Maritime Authority, the Ghana Navy, the Marine Police and the respective Metropolitan Municipal and District Assemblies in the respected areas affected.
Police have been alerted to arrest any persons found distributing fish from these incidents into the Ghanaian food chain.
The Food and Drugs Authority says it has since intensified its public education and sensitization on quality parameters and signs of contamination of fish in the fishing communities and fish markets.
Own up if you’ve consumed fish washed ashore – Hawa Koomson
Meanwhile, the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Mavis Hawa Koomson has asked residents of Osu who consumed some of the fish that were washed ashore to avail themselves for monitoring.
Addressing the media during an engagement with the fishermen of the area on Tuesday, April 6, 2021, the Minister urged such persons to own up for medical checks.
“I want to use this opportunity to plead with the community – if anyone has taken or consumed the fish please own up, so we can address any problems that may arise out of the consumption.”
“Please cooperate with us and own up, so we can monitor you to know your health situation. If there are some in the market, please let us withdraw them. We are doing our best to know what caused that situation,” said the Minister.