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Bududa district turns to bamboo growing to tame landslides

Bamboo seedlings. URN_Photo

Bududa, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Bududa district Authorities are encouraging locals to plant bamboo trees as a way of averting natural calamities in the area that has been hit by landslides over the years.

Over 2000 bamboo trees have so far been planted across the sub-counties that are more prone to landslides in a campaign that is intended to reforest the district but also prevent encroachment on the Mt Elgon forest for Bamboo shoots locally known as Maleewa.

Michael Malingha, the National Coordinator of the International Network for Bamboo and Rottan -INBAR an organization spearheading the growing of the bamboo trees in Bududa district says they intend to provide Bamboo seedlings to the locals in the 28 Sub Counties that make up Bududa district. They have started with seven that are most hit by landslides mainly targeting river banks.

Malingha says the planting of bamboo trees will provide an opportunity to fight climate change which is behind the increasing disasters like landslides and floods in the Elgon subregion. Bamboo is best known for its strength and durability and it is one of the fastest-growing trees for easily restoring degraded areas.

Most of the Bamboo in Uganda is found in protected areas like Mt Elgon National Park. But Malingha says that they want to domesticate the growing of bamboo such that it is found in all homes and prevent conflicts often sparked between the community and the Uganda Wildlife Authority.

Dr Selim Reza, the Regional Programs Manager for INBAR explains that they are focusing on capacity building of the locals and establishing Bamboo nursery beds in the selected seven Sub Counties before rolling out to the whole district.

Bududa Woman Member of Parliament Agness Nandutu is confident that the growth of Bamboo will curb the effects of human activity on the environment and improve household incomes.

Godfrey Francis Sukye and Bosco Mukumba both residents of Bushika Sub County in Bududa district said that they intend to grow the bamboo along the river banks noting the sub-county is a sub-county prone to landslides which have led to loss of lives and displacement of many people.

They said that there is a need to have the bamboo trees planted on the entire mountain to stop the soil from eroding

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