Following the acute food crisis in the Karamoja sub-region that has claimed the lives of hundreds of people, the government yesterday announced its plan to support the people with a three months relief food.
Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja revealed that the government allocated135 billion shillings to address the food crisis in the Karamoja region.
Hon. Faith Nakut, the Woman Member of Parliament representing Napak district, while appearing on The Fatboy Show, mentioned that the districts harshly affected by the famine are Kabong, Kotido, Moroto, and Napak.
She noted that the number of districts affected by famine is increasing as nearby districts such as Amudat have registered their 3 deaths.
She explained that the insecurity instigated the crisis as people lost their cattle and other sources of wealth in the process. This was in addition to the locusts' devastation of crops, flooding, drought, and armyworm attacks that happened consistently.
“During the Covid 19 lockdown, cattle markets were banned yet, livestock is the main source of income. That 2-year ban made it impossible for people to trade to purchase food or other commodities," she continued.
According to her, the severity of the crisis has been the worst since 1992, when the region suffered intense famine as a result of insecurity.
The MP, therefore, requested the government to invest in agriculture in the region as a long-term plan to curb the severe famine that has been hitting the region since the late 80s.
“We must invest in the input of agricultural production, and also the government has to boost the livestock health as a matter of affirmative action. We need to invest in production management because there’s the fluctuation of food prices at the end of the harvests which leads to hunger in the long run,” she advised.
She further said that the government needs to invest in meteorology to help the people of Karamoja crop in the right seasons to reduce the losses caused by floods and drought.
“In the long term, there should be an investment in irrigation so that we can have availability of water for crops and livestock. Currently, we have no irrigation facility in the entire region. But we have two dams available. If we carry out irrigation even on a small scale, we will be sure that shocks of this kind can be controlled,” she said.
The Fatboy show is hosted by James Onen aka Fatboy, Olive, and Sarah every weekday from 6 am to 10 am on RX Radio.