Breaking

Drought Kills 200 Cows In Hoima

Most of the pastoralists have been forced to sell off their cows for as low as Shillings 100,000. To date most farmers are continuing to lose their animals due to the prolonged drought.
cows looking for pasture in Nyabihukuru village Buseruka sub county Hoima District.

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Cattle farmers in Hoima have lost over 200 cattle because of drought that has hit the district since October 2018.   The water dams used to water the animals dried up as early as September 2018 leaving herdsmen crying foul. The dry spell forced cattle farmers to drive their animals to Lake Albert and River Wambabya for watering but many of them would collapse and die on the way due to the long distance.      

Most of the pastoralists have been forced to sell off their cows for as low as Shillings 100,000. To date most farmers are continuing to lose their animals due to the prolonged drought.    The most affected cattle farmers are from the areas of Kabale, Nyamasoga,  Kayera, Kiryamboga, Kabanda, Mbegu, Kapapi, Kasenyi lyato, lenju, Runga waaki, Tonya and Kaiso in the sub counties of Buseruka, Kigorobya, Buhanika, Kyabigambire and Kitoba.   Some of the animals are now at the danger of contracting the deadly foot and mouth disease since they are not confined in one place.        

Sam Ntambara, a cattle keeper at Nyamasoga in Buseruka Sub County, says he lost 20 head of cattle in a period of three months only. He says if the drought persists many of his animals could be killed.    

//Cue in; “Tugakitandikira mwaka guhoire… 

Cue out…ku gwa tandikire.”//             

James Kandwanaho, a herdsman in Tonya says he was forced to drive his animals to the neighboring Kitoba sub county in search of pasture but still the situation is not any better. He has 30 cows since December last year.  

//cue in; “Ekyanda Etutwaire kubi…  

Cue out…binga buli kiro.”// 

Victor Rugira, a pastoralist at Runga in Kigorobya Sub County has lost 25 of his cows due to the long drought. He says most of the dams that had been constructed in the area dried up in October.  

Geoffrey Komakech, the Hoima District Production Secretary, says the drought has greatly affected cattle farmers.  He however, advises the herdsmen to keep manageable numbers of animals given the continued levels of drought in the district.   

He explains that overstocking is still a problem in the district because herdsmen are yet to embrace modern livestock farming practices.   There are more than 300,000 cattle in Hoima district but annually over 1000 die due to lack of water and pasture resulting from the long drought according to the statistics from the district veterinary office.      

Dr Patrick Ndorwa, the Hoima District Veterinary Officer advises herdsmen to move their animals near the lake where they can easily access water for their animals.  

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