Monday, November 29, 2021

Drought ravages Ngamiland stock

Ngamiland famers are reeling with despair as drought is killing their livestock in great numbers on a daily basis while they helplessly watch.

One of the farmers who talked about the deaths of his cattle is Keopile Maruping of Thapolathari cattle post.

He says that their once lush grazing lands are currently filled with cattle carcasses that died from the drought.

“We have now lost count of the number of cattle that have died as a result of the current drought.

Everywhere you go in the grazing land and even near our homesteads are corpses of cattle that have died as a result of the drought,” he said. “It is really heart breaking.”

Another farmer from Masogwaneng, Tsogo Mosihe, echoed Maruping’s statement that their cattle are dying in big numbers.

”Recently, I was driving to our cattle post in Masogwaneng from Sehitwa and cattle corpses were on both sides of the road whilst vultures, which would normally have been feasting on the cattle, are now just watching the dead cattle as if they are saying that they had had enough,” he said.

Mosihe said that in his close to 50 years he has never witnessed drought of this proportion.

“I have never seen anything like this in all my years; it is very devastating and I know of older farmers who have been warned not to go to their cattle posts as they might suffer heart attacks from seeing the destruction drought has caused to their stock,” he said.

Ocean Moetse also expressed the same feelings of despair as the other farmers, saying more depressing is that he had just become a full time farmer after retiring and that it was now heartbreaking for him to see some of the cattle he had just bought to increase his stock dying from drought.

“At such times, one regrets why they had bought cattle instead of venturing into other businesses other than cattle,” he said.

Some Ngamiland farmers owe government thousands of pula that they were granted as loans after the outbreak of foot and mouth in 2007. Cattle were used as surety for the loans. The death of cattle is feared might make it impossible for the farmers to repay the loans.

There are also reports of livestock dying from drought in various parts of the country.

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