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Issue No:83
  • :0976 1121
  • :September
  • :2020

Samudra Report No.83, September 2020


Nigeria / COVID-19

A Heavy Blow

More than the COVID-19 pandemic itself, the lockdowns to prevent its spread have harder hit Nigeria’s unorganized small-scale fishers

This article is by Kafayat Fakoya (, Senior Lecturer and Shehu Latunji Akintola (, Professor, Department of Fisheries, Faculty of Science, Lagos State University, Nigeria

The COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally struck all facets of life in affected countries and the small-scale fisheries (SSF) of Nigeria are no exception. The pandemic has hit the country’s small fishers both directly and indirectly. Small operators are the bulk of Nigeria’s fisheries sector. They account for 70 per cent of the domestic fish production, and sustain the livelihoods of millions of people in one way or another; the dependence on local fish species for economic and food security is evidently large. SSF provides an accessible, cheap and rich source of protein and essential micronutrients to the rural population. Their impact on social, economic and cultural spheres is immense.

Yet many fishing communities face social, economic, and political marginalization. The reasons are not far to seek. The contribution of SSF to the gross domestic product (GDP) is obscured by...

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