An unidentified disease has devastated several acres of citrus fruit gardens in Soroti district. The most affected are orange plants. The leaves of an infected orange plant turn yellow and drop off, while the fruit develops black spots before they rot away. Edward Esegu, the LC 3 chairperson Soroti sub county and a farmer says most orange trees in his sub county have been attacked by the strange disease. He says that his 120 citrus trees have been affected by the disease.
Esegu points out that, he has resorted to picking and throwing away the rotten oranges. The father of six says the disease attack has affected the survival of his family, since oranges have been the biggest source of income for his family. Esegu is worried that he may not fulfill his obligation of paying school fees for his children in time.
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Saucet Ekipu, another Citrus farmer from Kabulamado village in Kamuda Sub County told URN that he has lost two acres of Oranges and one acre of Mangoes. Ekipu says the unknown disease has attacked the fruits turning them yellow with black spots around it. Ekipu says despite the fact that he harvested 80 bags of Oranges last year; he expects a huge loss this season.
Charles Francis Emaju, the Soroti District Acting Agricultural Officer has confirmed the outbreak of the disease. He however, says his office is still collecting data that will be used to identify the disease which has already ravaged several citrus gardens.