Dry Spell Forces Farmers to Sell off Crop Fields


In short
William Bagonza, the chairperson Rwimi Rice Farmers Association says that the district has looked on as farmers suffer the effects of the dry spell.

Agricultural authorities in Kabarole district are alarmed by the rate at which several farmers are selling off their land citing the dry spell. 

The dry spell has hit Rwimi and Kichwamba Sub Counties for the past four months, making farming activities increasingly difficult. Records from the district agricultural department shows that more than 300 farmers have in the past four months sold off their land after suffering huge loses.

David Murungi, the extension worker in-charge Bunyagabu County, says the decision by the farmers to sell off their land is a threat to food production and security in the district. Most of the food especially rice and maize that are consumed in the district are from Rwimi and Kichwamba Sub Counties.

But some of the farmers have defended their decision, saying the district has not helped them during the dry spell. George Musinguzi, a maize farmer in Kichwamba Sub County explains that he acquired a loan of Shillings 3 million to engage in rice production but made loses when his two acres rice and maize field dried up.

According to Musinguzi, he expected to generate profits of Shillings 2.5million to pay school fees for his children in vain.

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Agnes Kajumba, a rice farmer in Kakonga parish says maintaining land during the dry spells is very expensive yet she has to meet her urgent family needs.
She explains that she planted her crops early enough but she has lost hope of a bumper harvest because of the dry spell.

Kajumba says she was forced to sell her four-acre farm and move to Rwimi town council where she has started another business.

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William Bagonza, the chairperson Rwimi Rice Farmers Association says that the district has looked on as farmers suffer the effects of the dry spell.

He explains that extension officers in the area have not bothered to educate the farmers on irrigation techniques even when the sub county is surrounded by water sources which include rivers.

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Salvatore Abigaba, the Kabarole District Production Officer, encourages farmers to always plant early to avoid such losses. He says his office is also sensitizing farmers on drought resistant crop varieties as a remedy.


About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.