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Watson cast her net wide


SHERIA BRATHWAITE

Watson cast her net wide

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Fisherfolk from the Berinda Cox Fishing Complex in Oistins, Christ Church, and the Bridgetown Fisheries Complex revered Angela Watson for her outstanding contributions to the fishing industry.

Watson, who served as the president of the Barbados National Union of Fisherfolk Organisations (BARNUFO) between 1999 and 2006, died on Sunday. She celebrated her 63rd birthday on March 14 and her passing was announced during the culmination of FLOW Oistins Fish Festival Monday.

Some in the fishing industry said they were saddened by the news as she played an important role in developing the sector.

“Angela was quiet, but she was an instrumental leader in BARNUFO,” said fisherman and boat owner Stephen Cox, based in Oistins. “She was always willing to engage in any activity that would uplift the fishing industry. She had good ideas and if you had any complaints, she was readily available, even when she was no longer president.”

Fish vendor Lucille Clarke described Watson as a helpful person who was well versed in her work. She said the former president shared information with the vendors to help them understand the affairs of the fishing industry.

Fisherman Kirk Bayne added she was the type of leader who raised the standard of the industry and helped fisherfolk to understand that what they did was a skill and should be respected as a profession.

Current BARNUFO vice-president Sylvia White, who bones fish at the Bridgetown Fisheries Complex, said Watson played a critical role in maritime boundary disputes and fishing agreements in the region.

“She also worked on reviving the sea egg industry and having the population replenished around the island’s coastline. And when Hurricane Ivan damaged Grenada, she would have led a relief team of nine fishing vessels to send aid to that country.

“Angela mainly worked with the fisherfolk from Consett Bay in St John and Skeete’s Bay in St Philip. She also worked to get a lot of sea moss planted around the island so vendors could make shakes from them,” White added. (SB)

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