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Archive for the tag “lsingiro”

New Study Finds Worrying Climate Trend in Karamoja Over Last 35 Years (20.03.2017)

Released in Kampala today, the ‘Impacts of Climate Change on Food Security and Livelihoods in Karamoja’ found that temperatures have been rising in Karamoja over the last 35 years.

KAMPALA, Uganda, March 20, 2017 – A new study carried out by the Government of Uganda and its partners has found a new weather pattern that threatens to worsen food insecurity in the Karamoja region if no action is taken.

The study found that the average monthly rainfall in the region increased over the last 35 years and that the rainy season is now longer by two months. However, the rains – which now fall from around March to the end of the year – increasingly varied in volumes. This unpredictability was found to undermine agricultural production, thereby threatening to aggravate food insecurity in Karamoja.

Released in Kampala today, the ‘Impacts of Climate Change on Food Security and Livelihoods in Karamoja’ found that temperatures have been rising in Karamoja over the last 35 years.

The rising temperatures threaten to increase the frequency, intensity and duration of heat waves in the region, therefore reducing availability of water for crops and animals. This too undermines food security.

A large majority of people in Karamoja, particularly women, were not aware that changes to the climate had been taking place over decades, the study states. However, most of the people that had perceived changes to the climate had not taken any action to adapt, typically because they did not know how to do so. Where trees were planted as an adaptation measure, the sale of charcoal and firewood were also a common measure that people took in response to climate-related crop failure.

Sponsored by the Swedish Government, the study was carried out in 2016 by the Ministry of Water and Environment with support from the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the CGIAR Consortium’s Research Programme on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security.

The Uganda Minister for Water and Environment, Sam Cheptoris, said today, “These are significant findings that threaten any hope for Uganda achieving its Vision 2040 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), if no immediate action is taken.”

Cheptoris said that his Ministry was already calling for a national and regional response, advocating for climate change sensitive approaches across all Government sectors, educating the population about climate change, and undertaking emissions profiles.

“Karamoja’s population is heavily dependent on rain-fed agriculture, which is highly vulnerable to climate change,” said El Khidir Daloum, WFP Country Director for Uganda. “However, little has been known previously about the impacts of climate change on food security, and in particular, the ability of households in the region to adapt.”

WFP hopes that the findings and recommendations of the study will contribute to efforts toward appropriate adaptation measures while helping to identify policies that will safeguard the most vulnerable communities in Karamoja.

The study recommended that the Government and its partners increase investments in water harvesting and agroforestry schemes, education of the people, improved access to climate change information and the cultivation of drought-resistant crop varieties.

Within the Ministry of Water and Environment, the study was carried out by the Climate Change Department and the Uganda National Meteorological Authority.

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Mzee said today: ‘We cannot have famine in Uganda’, well apparently you do!

This morning, H.E. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni commissioned Dokolo water supply system. (National Water and Sewerage Corporation – NWSC)

Well, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni is apparently controlling the weather and steering the sun. However, the President doesn’t have those powers; he could have already built in systems that took care of water in the raining seasons and other irrigation schemes. This is special to hear, since he has been running the Republic for thirty years. That should be well known in the humid climate of Uganda. Well, here are parts of his speech in Dokolo on the International Woman’s Day!

“We cannot have famine in Uganda; that will not happen, even if it means diverting resources from other departments. We will do so although this will stop progress of key projects.” (…) “This little scare is good because it has waked us up to look at irrigation” (…) “As of now I have directed government departments to start working on solar powered pumps for irrigation and we have already experimented in some areas” (AYFAP, 2017).

Because the President Museveni cannot have listen well to Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS Net) who in their February 2017 edition wrote this about Uganda:

During the February to June lean season, very poor households in Moroto and Napak are expected to face food consumption gaps and be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3). In these areas, poorly distributed rainfall led to below-average production and very poor households depleted food stocks three months earlier than normal. Many are facing increasing difficulty purchasing sufficient food to meet their basic needs, as food prices are 30-40 percent above average. Food security is expected to improve to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) in July with the green harvest” (…) “Pasture conditions and water resources in the cattle corridor are expected to remain below average through March due to above-average land surface temperatures. Conditions are likely to improve to near normal levels in April, alongside average seasonal rainfall. Conditions will then seasonally decline from June through September. Livestock body conditions and milk productivity are expected to follow the same trend” (FEWS Net, February 2017).

So the international body that follows the possible outbreaks of famine and early warnings is saying continued struggles in Karamoja and the cattle corridor of Isingiro. Even if the President is claiming there shouldn’t be trouble or a crisis. Because Museveni himself saying there cannot be famine in Uganda, still, it is not much his government of three decades has done to curb the problem. His government has not thought of technics of keeping water and irrigate the soil. Not too long ago he spent time and used jerry-cans and bicycle to irrigate the soil, which cannot be the solution for the lack of water in Karamoja or in Isingiro.

Back in 2011 to international media the President seemed to have a plan:
“The Ugandan government, according to Museveni, now plans to “exploit the potential of Karamoja”, a move which is expected to involve offering large tracts of Karamoja land to foreign corporations to grow biofuels, as well as designating more “conservation” and mining areas. This, say critics, will only increase conflict and hunger, force more young people to move into cities, and will destroy a rich way of life that has proved resilient and economically viable” (Vidal, 2011).

So 6 years later and new famine in the Karamoja, the plans of 2011 seems like they are hurting like the critics did say. So, the new plans might cause more havoc on the embattled people of Northern Uganda.

Therefore in his own making he has destroyed the livelihood and other issues in these volatile areas. The ones in Isingiro is different, as the pastoral and the cattle corridor, Seemingly, the Ugandan Republican can have famine, it is just President Museveni and his regime who cannot control or having the mechanism to contain it. They do not have the means or efforts to help the ones in need more than a few PR scoops of trucks and meals.

So President Museveni needs guidance and needs an incentive to earn on it. If so than this problems would be fixed, if there we’re some sort of scam or program that could be used so the people could get something and he could eat of their plate. If so, the irrigation scheme would be in place and the people wouldn’t starve. So please, conning people who cares about the famine in Uganda give a way for the petty thief to steal little some and people can get some. Peace.

Reference:

African Youth Forum against Poverty (AYFAP) – ‘Famine Scare is Good, Says Museveni’ (08.03.2017) link: http://www.ayfapuc.org/index.php/2017/03/08/famine-scare-is-good-says-museveni/

FEWS NET – ‘Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes likely to persist in bimodal areas until June harvest’ (February 2017) link: http://www.fews.net/east-africa/uganda/food-security-outlook/february-2017

Vidal, John – ‘Uganda: nomads face an attack on their way of life’ (27.11.2011) link: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2011/nov/27/uganda-nomad-farmers-climate-change

Food Insecurity still high in Uganda

uganda-feeding

There are certain aspects of governance that is still weak in Uganda, as the Food Insecurity in major parts of the Republic is still high. The knowledge of the Famine and lacking food in big regions of the Cattle Corridor and Northern Uganda; the pastoral areas have been hit hard after the El Nino and the draught. This has left many small-farmers behind and left their crop to die on the fields. This as the lacking irrigation and building of proper wells has also stopped the constant use of water. Therefore what the Hon. Vincent Bamulangaki Ssempijja, the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries has some words to say. Here are the important aspects of the findings of the Ministry and how the lacking levels of food is reported from him.

Falling Crop Levels:

“The Food Security Analysis done by MAAIF in collaboration with other stakeholders in July 2016 indicated that at national level, the country experienced an average crop loss of approximately 40% for pulses (beans, groundnuts, peas) and 80% for cereals (maize, millet, rice, sorghum) from the first season harvests. The most affected crop was maize”(Ssempijja, P2, 2017).

Food Crisis:

“Colleagues the latest Food Security situation (2nd November, 2016) that was a result of rigorous scientific analysis indicated that the most affected areas are the districts that lie in the cattle corridor, stretching from North Eastern up to South-Western Uganda. This information was later confirmed by the follow up of the National Food Security Awareness Campaign that was undertaken by Inter-ministerial teams led by Cabinet ministers and/or Ministers of State and coordinated by the Prime Minister in late November 2016. The sub regions of Karamoja, Teso, Lango, Acholi, Bukedi, West Nile, Parts of Busoga and most districts along the Cattle Corridor including lsingiro, Kiruhura, Rakai, Ssembabule witnessed massive crop failure, leading to little or no harvest. This has resulted into the food crisis we are experiencing” (Ssempijja, P: 3, 2017).

Market Price on Food on the rise:

Harvests of cereals, Matooke, bananas, cassava, sweet potatoes, Irish potatoes and beans are on markets but the supply is low and the demand both domestically and regionally (Rwanda, Kenya, Burundi, Southern Sudan, DRC-Congo, Tanzania, and Central African Republic) is high. Market prices for all food commodities have increased” (Ssempijja, P: 3, 2017).

Current affected areas with mass food insecurity:

“The current estimates however, indicate that 25% of the population in lsingiro District are in an emergency phase of food insecurity; meaning they access half a meal or nothing at all in a day” (…) “65% of the population in Karomoja sub region are in a crisis phase of food insecurity; meaning they access one meal or half a meal in a day” (…) “35% of the population in the districts of Katakwi, Amuria, Kumi, Bukedia, parts of Serere and Kaberamaido are in the same phase with Karamoja sub region (Crisis); meaning they access one meal or half a meal in a day” (…) “50% of the people of Koboko, Yumbe, Moyo, Maracha, Arua, Zombo.Nebbi, Adjumani, Amuru, Nwoya, Gulu, Pader, Lamwo, Kitgum, Agago, Soroti, Ngora, Amolatar, Pallisa, Buteleja, Rakai, lsingiro and Tororo are in a stressed pahse of food insecurity; meaning they access one and half meals in a day” (…) “the total population that was in need of relief food, as of November, 2016 stood at about 1,300,000 people (the sub regions of Karamoja, Teso , Lango, Acholi, Bukedi, West Nile, Parts of Busoga, lsingiro, Bukomansimbi, and Kalungu)” (Ssempijja, P: 5, 2017).

Allocated funds to Food Security:

“Note the need to continue providing Food relief by the Ministry of Disaster preparedness costed at 52.65 billion to the affected families, this was already alluded to by the District Local governments during the recently concluded food security awareness campaigns” (…) “Note the need to re-allocate and frontload funds from the NAADS Secretariat/OWe equivalent to UGX 26.63 Billion to avail quick maturing food security planting materials such as: maize, beans, cow peas, cassava and banana suckers to rehabilitate destroyed plantations (especially to farmers in lsingiro district) in season one of 2017 as soon as the rains are established” (Ssempijja, P: 9, 2017).

The regions that are hit says a lot of the lacking resources and the government programs that are supposed to control, the worst hit areas are still in Isingiro and Karamoja regions. The other ones those are also hit, but not as bad in Katakwi, Amuria, Kumi, Bukedia, Serere and Kaberamaido. These shows the level of food insecurity, but the final number dropped from the Minister shows the amount of people who are need of food relief, they we’re 1,300,000 people. That is the people of the Republic. This is happening as the food prices are souring as the food insecurity is happening in the nations around Uganda. So they are not in a secure vacuum, the need of food relief around Uganda is also growing.

Therefore the draught and death of the pastoral farming is showing the lack of government support to crisis. Certainly there are needed allocations and institutions to bring the needed relief and also revive the agricultural use of water and also systems to secure the citizens. This is what the Ugandan Government is missing. To keep food stocks and secure that the citizens, the farmers are sufficiently harvesting and securing their fields for any sort of changes. Peace.

Reference:

Ssempijja, Vincent Bamulangaki – ‘Statement on the Food Security Situation in the Country’ (09.01.2017)

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