Nile perch is one of Kenya's and Uganda's most important export goods. It is hardly consumed in either country though, as it ends up straight into European markets.
Since the number of Nile perches in Lake Victoria started decreasing, the competition amongst fishermen got more and more intense. It is in this scenario that a small island - a rock merely the size of a football pitch - came to attention. People discovered they could save time and fuel when they sold their catch to middlemen on this isolated rock. In fact, the boat trip from Migingo to Kenya takes two hours, and to Uganda at least seven.
Fishermen on Migingo get paid in cash. Word got around in the region. Compared to local economic standards, there is a lot of money to be made on Migingo. Women moved there, offering all kinds of services. Businessmen arrived, trying to make easy money by selling cheap liquor.
Living conditions are rough. The lake water serves for cooking, drinking, washing and as a latrine. Diseases have spread on the island, and heat and filth are hard to bare.
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