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By: Annakleta Haikera and Justicia Shipena

Farmers in Kavango West fear that they might experience drought due to a lack of rain that the region is currently suffering.

Speaking to The Villager, Katrina Haingura, a resident from Nakatava, said low rainfall has affected the growth of her crops.

She said farmers now fear losing their entire fields in this dry situation.

“If it continues like this we will starve to death or maybe our children will suffer from malnutrition since we depend wholeheartedly on the growth of these crops. We are scared to think that this might lead to drought, because the crops are dying. If the rain is low it will lead to significant problems such as lower harvest yields,” said Haingura.

Haingura added that farmers cannot use the river as a source of water for their corps.

“Our fields are too big and we do not have irrigation schemes to water these crops. We are an extended family. My siblings and I depend on these fields and if there is poor growth of crops, we will starve.”

She stated that the crops are her only source of income and because of no rain she is unable to make money.

Haingura further appealed to the government to assist farmers in the region with any form of drought relief.

“The current situation does not look good and I know these crops will not grow any time soon.”

Another farmer, Paulus Ndara, a resident at Kahenge said rain is usually seen as beneficial to crops and fields.

“This dry season has affected the growth of our crops.  We now live in fear because if the rain is not going to come by the end of this season our crops will get very dry and die,” said Ndara.

He added that the intense heat is also affecting his crops.

“Our crops are dying. The Mahangu plants are turning yellow and we entirely depend on these crops, we make a living from these crops. I have spent thousands of dollars in buying seeds and paying the tractor to do cultivation,” he said.

He further said they would experience starvation if rain does not come to their rescue.

“We will lose all our crops. We are on the brink of a severe drought.”

Moreover, Angelina Mukuve, also a farmer in the region doubts there will be a harvest this year.

“The land is dry and I doubt it will happen this year. Some of my crops are trying to grow but the heat is intense.”

Mukuve said the economy is bad and this also affects their sales of maize meal.

“The struggle is real and I think farming is the best because you can feed your family or sell the maize to generate income,” she said.

Apollos Ndinoshiho who is a farmer in the Kunene region told The Villager that the situation there was quite hectic for the animals.

“We are pushing forward and we spoke to the guys from the meteorological services and they said we should expect rain from 15 January 2022.”

The agriculture ministry’s spokesperson Jona Musheko earlier this week encouraged farmers to remain hopeful.

He said this could be the result of climate change.

“We cannot run away from it, but just remain hopeful that we will definitely receive rain,” said Musheko.

He stated that farmers at the moment can mechanize agriculture.

“This means that we need to work on the way we do agriculture. We have to zoom in on the issue of technology. If you have quality seeds, that means they have a short period of time to yield. Their climatic endurance is quite high,” he said.

Musheko said they are trying to find a way in which they can put green schemes to use.

“If we produce sufficient food during the year in these green schemes we will be on a better side when it comes to food security.”

He added that as soon as the process of finalizing modalities and running back of the green schemes Namibia will be able produce food with or without rain.



Justicia Shipena

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