Kilimanjaro faces acute food shortage

Three districts in Kilimanjaro region may suffer food shortage  this year due to unreliable and unpredictable weather patterns.

A statement from the Kilimanjaro Regional Commissioner, Mr Leonidas Gama presented before President Jakaya Kikwete who was on a three-day tour of the region last week, indicated that Same, Mwanga and Rombo districts are facing food shortage caused by unreliable rains.

So far, according to the RC, the government had taken various measures to overcome the situation.

In the third and fourth quarter of 2011 the region received a total of 7,876.8 tons of grain including 6,369 tons of relief maize sold at 50/- per kilogramme. 

Mr Gama told the president that a total of 707.8 tons of relief food were provided free of charge to people who could not afford to pay for it, while the total cost of distributing the consignment of grain reached 349.9m/-.

Other players also came to the districts rescue including the Tanzania Red Cross Society (TRCS) which sent in an addition 125 tons of maize and 38 tons of beans to the affected areas. 

The Kilimanjaro RC pointed out that, the region, which is one of the country’s bread baskets suffered food shortage because the drought spell has been affecting the region for more than three years now, thus even the food stored by farmers were totally exhausted.

He blamed effects of climate change, saying they contributed to poor rainfall in the area leading to famine. Mr Gama said already there have been efforts to encourage farmers in the districts to plant drought-resistant crops such as sorghum.

The RC said plans for the forthcoming long-rains’ season (April-June) was to cultivate 433,440 hectares, which were expected to produce 2,073,550 tons of various crops.

Commenting on agricultural input vouchers, he said the region had received 222,867 vouchers which would be enough for 222,867 acres and they had already been distributed to the farmers.

He said the number of tourists in the region had increased from 28,417 in 2003/2004 to 52,570 in 2010/2011 with revenue obtained from tourists increasing from 10.5bn/- to 45.604bn/-.
Source: The Daily News,
Share on Google Plus

About Abduel Elinaza

This is a short description in the author block about the author. You edit it by entering text in the "Biographical Info" field in the user admin panel.