Felix Onencan, a farmer in Agung village says he has suffered unimaginable loss after the elephants destroyed his crops and shuttered his investment. He told URN that he procured a bank loan and hired 300 acres of land on which he planted soybean which has all been ruined.
More than 1,000 acres of crop
gardens have been destroyed in Nwoya district during an invasion by stray
elephants from Murchison Falls National Park.
The elephants overrun Agung village
in Anaka Sub-County and ravaged gardens of sweet potatoes, banana plantations,
maize, sugarcane, beans, soybeans, groundnuts, millet and sesame, among others.
Felix Onencan, a farmer in Agung village
says he has suffered unimaginable loss after the elephants destroyed his crops
and shuttered his investment. He told URN that he procured a bank loan and
hired 300 acres of land on which he planted soybean which has all been ruined.
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Onencan explains that he had invested
up to 50 million Shillings on the farm including hiring land and buying agro-inputs among others.
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Anaka Sub County Chairperson
Godfrey Opobo says that data compiled by his office in collaboration with
affected village Local Councils shows that at least 200 households have been
affected by the invasion.
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In August, residents of Yagopino
and Golla Villages in Pawat Omeru West parish in neighbouring Purongo Sub County
suffered similar damages from the marauding elephants from Murchison Falls
Meanwhile, a number of households
in Lii, Alero and Kochgoma Sub Counties that border the park have decried food insecurity and strained economic livelihoods following persistent
destruction of crops by stray wild animals.
The families have tried planting
peppers, use of beehives, digging trenches along the park boundary and
clustering crops together among others to deter the animals but the methods
have not worked for the community.
Nwoya District Chairperson,
Patrick Okello Oryema appealed to the government to prioritize the welfare of citizens
in order to bring an end to the continued human-wildlife-related conflicts
that have dragged on for too long.
Wilson Kagoro, the Conservation
Warden of Murchison Falls National Park under Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA)
said he wasn’t aware of the incident by press time.