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Kiruhura Farmers Want Dams Desilted

Over the years, silt has collected in the dams reducing their capacity to hold water.
One of the dried up Dams in Rweshande Sub County

Audio 4

Farmers in the Kiruhura district have asked the government to desilt water dams whose capacity of water has been reduced.

Desilting is the process of removing earthy materials, such as sand and mud, from the bed of a water source. Over the years, silt has collected in the dams reducing their capacity to hold water.

The district that lies in the dry corridor has been hit by drought for the last two years which has left dams dried up.

Stephen Gumisiriza a farmer in Rweshande Sub County says for the last two years the district has not had any rains and the only community dam is overwhelmed by the number of people.

He says that silting of the dam has also reduced the capacity of water that is reserved.

//Cue in: “twine ekiziba kimwe… Cue out: …Kiruhura turikubi munonga.”//

Agaba Ruteitera a farmer in Kikatsi Sub County says they have been hit by drought for the last three years and the only survival has been their dams which have also dried up. 

He faults the government for neglecting them noting that the only solution government has provided is water vehicles that sell 500 litres of water at 100,000 shillings. 

//Cue in: “omugombolola egi eya… Cue out: …tractors zokutimba amaizi.”//

He says a Jerry can of water costs between 1,500 and 2,000 shillings depending on the distance of the water source.

Daniel Rubeihayo a Farmer in Rweshande Sub County says the only dams in the area are owned by farmers and can only hold water for six months. He says he spent over 100 Million Shillings to construct the dam which has since also dried up.

Anthony Tayebwa, the District Agricultural Officer says the government has allocated 1 billion shillings to construct the Kyenshema dam while other dams are still being designed. 

Dan Mukago Rutetebya, the LCV Chairperson Kiruhura says the over 30 government dams in the district have silted and others have been taken by individuals.

He says those that have been reclaimed have been handed over to the Ministry of Agriculture for silting.

//Cue in: “dams ziri nyingi… Cue out: …nyo tufune amaizi.”//

He says they are challenged by the lack of tractors to carry out desilting. He adds that the government had allocated a tractor that was being used by three districts but it broke down.

//Cue in: “president waffe yatuwako…  Cue out: …nga ejawulo weri.”//    

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