Over four hundred acres of maize plantation in Kasese district have been put to waste following the persistent drought that has ravaged the district since November last year.
Most maize plantations have developed dry brown leaves and others dried up at flowering stage especially in the sub counties of Karusandara, Kitswamba, Mukunyu, Maliba and Nyakiyumbu.
Figures from the district agricultural department indicate that 80 percent of farmers in Kasese are engaged in maize plantation.
Ddembe Kasozi a commercial farmer in Karusandara Sub County, who planted eighty acres of maize last season, says he will hardly harvest 40percent of the crop due to total failure as a result of the prolonged dry spell. Kasozi says he invested over ten million in the plantation process with hopes of getting better yields but is now already counting losses.
Kasozi, who was touring the state minister for agriculture Hon. Christopher Kibazanga on his maize plantation, wants government to help them as farmers with mobile irrigation system. He observes that they would have saved lots of acres if they were not incapacitated with modern methods of farming. //Cue in: "And this failure...Cue out: ...been able to save."//
He says they expected rain in September but it didn't come, up to November whereby it also appeared for only one week before disappearing. //Cue in: "We expected rain...Cue out: ...lose their crop."//
Elizabeth Biira, another farmer in Kitswamba who planted sixty two acres of maize, says only about ten acres will give her yields. She also prays that government supports the farmers so that they can start irrigating during the dry season.
The state minister for agriculture Christopher Kibazanga, however, revealed plans by government to pump water to farms using hydro systems.
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Other crops that were destroyed include beans, cassava and coffee.