At least 7000 farmers in Agago district are in distress after heavy rain accompanied by hailstones destroyed their crop gardens on Friday.
The LC III of Omiya Pacwa Sub-County, Raymond Otim, told theCooperator that the violent rain, affected 10 villages in Lujim and Lakwa parishes in the same sub county.
According to Otim, the hailstones took two days to dissolve, leaving many crop fields flooded.
“The LC Is of the affected villages are still compiling data of the affected farmers, but I estimate that between 500-600 acres of food and cash crops have been destroyed,” Otim said.
He says the affected crops include simsim, sorghum, beans, soybeans, maize, ground nuts and cotton among others.
“I gave the information to the district leaders and they said we should collect data of all gardens and the affected farmers for response,” he said.
The LCV of Agago district, Leonard Ojok, the heavy rains have left a number of gardens waterlogged, especially in Kuywe and Patongo sub counties.
“By Sunday, 27 acres of crops in Kuwye Sub County were submerged,” Ojok said.
According to Ojok, families whose gardens and homes are flooded are relocating to relatives and friends who are not affected.
“Some families are sending their children to friends who have not been affected by the floods, as they wait for the floods to subside,” Ojok said.
He says apart from crops, domestics animals such as goats and cattle are also affected, forcing their owners to relocate with them to drier places.
“Affected families in the flooded areas are now moving with their animals like pastoralists. Goats and cattle can’t live long in water, lest their hooves get infected and fall off,” he said.
Acan Peninah one of the affected farmers in Lakwa parish says she lost 5 acres of maize and two acres of soy beans due to the hailstones, and wonders how she will fend for her family.
Acan appeals to the district leaders to make their problem known to the ministry of disaster and preparedness, so that they are assisted.
Peter Okello, another farmer in Lakwar parish says he lost 15 acres of simsim. Okello says he has over the years majored in growing simsim, some of which he sells in order to buy different food stuffs and other necessities.
Morris Ocana, the vice Chairperson LC V, Agago district, says a technical team from the production department paid a visit to the affected areas and will write a report to the district disaster management committee for action.