THE water pan at Ongenga settlement in the Ohangwena Region was Monday morning a sight to behold as women both young and old, as well as men, invaded the oshana with their traditional fishing instruments to harvest freshwater fish now trapped in the muddy water.
The good rainy season earlier this year filled the northern pans with water and also brought the delicious freshwater fish from southern Angola.
Locals were free to catch fish in the shallow pans, but fishing in the deep water ponds is strictly prohibited to minimise the danger of drowning and to preserve the water for livestock consumption.
Permission to harvest fish is granted only after the respective village headmen have judged that the level of the water no longer poses a danger to human life.
That was the case at Ongenga where local residents were finally granted permission to harvest fish because the pan is drying up and therefore no longer poses the danger of downing, and the water is no longer fit for animal consumption.
Villagers turned up in large numbers, each armed with “oshongo”, a traditional fishing instrument.