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KUANTAN - A total of 829 of the 1,700 fishermen in Pahang receive a living allowance of RM200 per month provided by the government to ease their burden.
Pahang Fisheries Department director, Datuk Adnan Hussain said living allowance for fishermen was first introduced in 2014 by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak who is concerned about the plight.
According to him, although fishermen registered in the country a total of 1,700 people but only 829 received subsistence allowances because their income depends on the results of fish and shrimp.
"The Department received many requests for a living allowance, but it could not help because of the approval of a special committee only decided in Putrajaya.
"Income can be increased if the river fishermen diversify their business such as running projects cage fish farming, poultry farming, trade and gardening.
"They can not rely entirely on the catch even if the price of fish and crayfish higher two to three times more than the sea," he said.
Adnan said, the price of some types of fish such as charge, sunshade, catfish and green fruit between RM20 and RM200 per kilogram, provide lucrative income to the fishermen in the major rivers in the state.
He said, to increase the number of fish in the river, they had a relief program in public waters, involving all the major rivers in the country and 1.2 million various fish released this year.
"Among the released fish fry is complain, catfish, river carp, catfish, sunshade, temoleh and sand. With this program it is hoped the release of the amount of fish in the main river in the country is growing.
"I also hope that people cooperate to report to the department to find out illegal activities such as poisoning and using an electric current," he said.