Panic as Desert Locusts finally reach Uganda

Posted: 2020-02-10T09:02:58Z Read: 1,341 times
Panic as Desert Locusts finally reach Uganda

The country is in panic mode after desert locusts finally arrived in Nabilatuk through Nakapiripirit district, before another swarm was sighted in Nakabaat, Moroto district.

Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda called an emergency meeting last evening after the locusts were seen approaching Kosike HC111, a few minutes to 3:00pm on Sunday by residents. An hour later, the first swarm was sighted by residents and the team from Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, MAAIF.

"I have called an emergency meeting of relevant political leaders& technical officers at the office of the Prime Minister at 7pm tonight to immediately swing into action with the preparedness interventions we have been planning to deal with #DesertLocusts" Rugunda wrote on Twitter.

For over a month, the Premier and a group of officials from the ministries of Finance, Defence, East African Affairs and Agriculture among others have been meeting over a plan to fight the locusts before evading the country. At some point, they planned on linking with their Kenyan counterparts to offer help in fighting the locusts but this never happened 

Now, Robert Adiaka the Amudat Resident District Commissioner says the locusts were Sunday evening seen heading towards Nakapiripirit and Nabilatuk by 6:00pm, and that different teams are already on the ground to handle the situation. Adiaka notes that another swarm is reported to be moving from Kiwoi in West Pokot County of Kenya.

Meanwhile in Moroto, Desert Locusts were seen in Nakabaat, Rupa Sub County a few minutes past 3:00pm, according to the Moroto District Production and Marketing Officer, Dr. Francis Inangolet Olaki.

According to Food and Agriculture Organization FAO, this is the worst desert locusts outbreak in East Africa in 70 years,