Erratic weather frustrating Busia farmers
By: Melanie Aanyu
Extreme weather conditions characterised by heavy winds, hailstones and low rainfall, have left several farmers in Busia District worried about having poor harvest.
Last month, crops in Mawero East ‘B’ and Sofia villages in Eastern Division, Busia Municipality were destroyed, while hailstones hit Akipeneti and Alupe villages in Buteba Sub-county and later Kubo in Masafu Sub-county, leaving farmers’ crops destroyed.
In an interview at the weekend, Ms Faith Siketa, a resident of Mawero East ‘B’ village, said last season, the majority of the farmers in the village had extremely poor harvests due to low, unreliable rainfall.
Mr Hassan Wesonga, the Mawero East ‘B’ village chairperson, described the hailstones as “the worst disaster he has seen in 40 years”, adding that the hailstones destroyed all the crops the farmers had planted.
Mr James Okello, a banana farmer in Mudaya Village, Sikuda Sub-county, said he has lost 400 banana plants that were due for harvest around Christmas time at “not less than Shs5m”.
Mr Aggrey Mirembe, the Busia District Senior Agriculture Officer, attributed the low rainfall to degradation of the environment around the lake areas, and encroachment on Nasyagombe wetland.