Northern farmers worry about low rainfall

Northern communal farmers have expressed concern over their crops due to a lack of rain in the region.

Over the past few weeks no rainfall has been observed, causing mahangu and sorghum crops to dry up and wilt due to extreme heat.

Northern farmers, who are mainly communal farmers, started ploughing their fields at the prospect of rain late last year.

“We ploughed our fields as is tradition. It’s not cheap at all. Imagine ploughing your field and cultivating and now it looks like it was all in vain.

“The crops are dry because of the sun,” Sophia Haiduwa of Oshikunde in the Ohangwena region says.

Hambeleleni Hamupunda, also from Oshikunde, says she was optimistic when her mahangu crop was sprouting, but is now skeptical.

“My crops were growing, but are now drying out and worms have also started attacking them. It has not rained in weeks, but if it rains we may have a chance at reaping a good harvest.

“We are looking to the heavens only,” she says.

Another farmer, Lucia Hangula of Onanime village, says she does not how she would feed her household.

“We don’t receive any relief in terms of food from the government and this situation does not look good. How will we survive if our crops die?” she asks.

The Namibia Meteorological Service’s chief forecaster, Odillo Kgobetsi, says rain is expected over the northern region in the coming week, as well as over the country’s central and eastern parts.

Temperatures are also expected to drop in the northern regions, he says.

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