THE provincial agriculturist is recommending to the Sanguniang Panlalawigan to allocate funds for the incentives of Bantay Dagat groups that successfully ran after illegal fishers.

Provincial Agriculturist Roldan Saragena lamented that in the agricultural summit held in Davao City recently, it was revealed that Cebu’s fishery sector and marine food production has declined.

“This is mainly because of illegal, unregulated fishing activities, so we have to strengthen the Bantay Dagat,’ Saragena said.

Yesterday, he called the agriculture officers of towns and cities to a meeting to discuss the illegal fishing problem.

Among other concerns, they discussed how their office’s programs and for 2017 can complement those of the municipalities and cities.

They also discussed the plan of the Provincial Government to strengthen the Bantay Dagat by increasing the number of its members in towns or cities where it is necessary.

“The Provincial Government will give them support to maximize the guarding of the coastal areas against illegal fishing,” Saragena said, adding that Capitol may even subsidize their operations.

He added that his office will also conduct seminars for Bantay Dagat, particularly on procedures in apprehending illegal fishers and filing cases against them in court.