Striving to put food on the table

Harijam shows his boat which has been hauled on land due to the rough sea and stormy weather. Photo: Ramidi Subari

A fisherman’s tale  

KUCHING: For those in the lower income group, earning a daily wage especially during the prevailing economic crisis largely effected by the Covid-19 pandemic is no easy task.

While one has to ensure that the daily income is sufficient to pay for the bills, he/she would have to make sure there is food on the table each day.

Local fisherman Harijam Tareh

Harijam Tareh, a fisherman in Kampung Buntal near here is willing to do whatever it takes to ensure there is fresh food on the table for his family.

He said usually during the king tide season and heavy rains he would not go out to the sea to fish.

However, since the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic outbreak, the father of two children said he had no choice but to go out to sea rain or shine.

The travel restriction order has further aggravated the economy of the village fishermen as fewer people were coming to buy their catch.

“Prior to Covid-19, our village was usually thronged with visitors and tourists who came to our market during weekend, to eat and buy our catch.

“Now, it is quite slow as many visitors are hesitant to go out because of the virus, he told New Sarawak Tribune when met at Kampung Buntal on Sunday.

He said he was earning less cash because fewer people were coming over to buy their catch, and as a result, most of fishes caught were for self-consumption.

“Fortunately, the government had allowed us to use our savings in EPF. The iSinar programme has helped to relief some of our financial burden.

“With the money, I can buy essential school items for my children,” he said.