The panic started after reports that swarms of desert locusts had been sighted in Abim district on Monday evening. The district located in Karamoja sub-region borders Kapelebyong and Amuria in Teso and Otuke and Agago in Lango Sub Region.
The invasion of the desert
locusts in parts of Karamoja and Teso has triggered panic among residents of Lango,
an area that shares a common border with the infested region.
The panic started after reports
that swarms of desert locusts had been sighted in Abim district on Monday
evening. The district located in
Karamoja sub-region borders Kapelebyong and Amuria in Teso and Otuke and Agago in
Lango Sub Region.
The desert locusts invaded the
Karamoja sub-region on Sunday evening through Amudat district, with the first
swarm entering from West Pokot through Kosike in Karita Sub County towards
Nakapiripirit and Nabilatuk areas. Another swarm came from Turkana County,
Loima District in Kenya to Nakabaat in Rupa Sub County.
On Monday morning, Government
sent 18,000 litres of chemicals to Amudat District in Karamoja sub-region to
aid the aerial spraying of locusts. The government
is using motorized sprayers, a drone and manual sprayers, to control the
However, Lango sub-region leaders
that many of them may not have the capacity to deal with the threat. Dokolo
District Agricultural Officer Geoffrey Okaka says the district is relying on
the Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Disaster Preparedness to tackle the
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Alebtong District chairperson
Okello John Bosco is equally worried that the region will certainly face food
insecurity once the locusts enter the areas. According to the Food and Agriculture
Organisation-FAO, an average swarm, which contains up to 40 million insects,
can travel up to 150 km in a single day and can devour enough food to feed 34
million people within that time.
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Lira District Agricultural
Officer Dorcus Alum says the District lacks equipment and chemicals to handle
an invasion of that magnitude.
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Lango sub-region has a total of
nine Districts; Alebtong, Amolatar, Apac, Dokolo, Kole, Lira, Oyam, Otuke
and Kwania. Of these Dokolo, Alebtong
and Otuke are the most threatened because they are closer to Karamoja.
As of Tuesday morning,
stakeholders in Alebtong District were set to have an emergency meeting to
discuss how to handle the desert locusts in their District.
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The UN Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) recently launched a USD 76 million appeals to control the
locusts' spread. So far, only around USD
20 million has been received; roughly half of which came from a UN emergency