The project objectives
The sector objective of the Nile Basin Initiative is to contribute to poverty reduction and sustainable socio-economic development through equitable utilization of and benefits from the common Nile Basin water resources. The LEAF Pilot Project objective is to avail the Governments of Uganda and the DRC with a sustainable will address poverty issues particularly amongst riparian communities along the lakeshores of Lakes Edward and Albert.

Read More... The investment and management plan for the joint use of the water and fisheries resources of Lakes Edward and Albert. The pilot projectpilot project is expected to suggest ways for harmonization of national policies and laws. The pilot project will provide options for regional cooperation in the management of the resources of the two lakes. The project will contribute to improvement of the living standards and working situation of the disadvantaged riparian fishing communities of the two countries. The pilot project, through sensitization will raise the awareness of beneficiaries and other stakeholders on sustainable use of natural resources. The project will also propose mitigation measures for the degraded environment. Further, it is hoped that the project activities will minimize prospects for regional and ethnic conflicts in the lake basins of the two lakes.

Expected Project Outputs
The LEAF Pilot Project is expected to produce the following outputs:
• Plans for an improved ecological balance and greater bio-diversity in the lakes system;
• Detailed Environmental and Social Management Plan;
• Plans for strengthening the capacities of the lake-wide fishing communities to co-manage shared resource and infrastructure;
• Integrated lakes Management plan and investment projects;
• Detailed statistics on poverty and fishery activities; and
• Plans for harmonizing fishing policies and regulations.

The consultants have done extensive review of literature from various sources including reports from departments from the Government of the DRC and the Government of the Republic of Uganda, NGOs and international sources in order to find key environmental and fisheries problems in the two basins. The consultants have also done a reconnaissance survey and extensive consultations with stakeholders in the two lake basins in December 2006 so as to verify the problems identified in the literature review.

Read More...The two lakes are threatened by factors such as catchments degradation, poor agricultural practices, deforestation, destruction of wetlands, deterioration of water quality, over fishing and unsustainable fishing practices leading to decline in the fisheries. Further, there are inadequate human and institutional capacities for research and management of the fisheries resources; there is insufficient awareness of existing management policies, laws and regulations. Moreover, fishing infrastructure on the lakeshores are lacking or in a very poor state. The following, therefore, are clusters of the main environmental and fisheries problems identified and verified within the two lake basins

Fisheries and Biodiversity Concerns
• Declining fish biodiversity;
• Inadequate information on aquatic biodiversity;
• Over fishing, illegal fishing and irrational fishing practices;
• Frequent mass fish kills;

Read More... • Gear theft and piracy on the lakes;
• Cross-border fishing conflicts;
• Poor and inadequate data collection mechanisms;
• Inadequate monitoring, control and surveillance of the fisheries;
• Poor law enforcement and extension services due to inadequate facilities, understaffing, compromising of law enforcers; and
• Poor community participation in the management of the fisheries.

Fish Quality Concerns
• Poor and inadequate fish handling and preservation facilities on the lakes and on the beaches;
• High post harvest losses;
• Poor post harvest procedures, especially handling and chilling;
• Poor fish quality assurance procedures and facilities.