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Karamojong farmers sell off farm equipment as scrap to buy food

Ox ploughs sold to scrap dealers. URN photo

Kaabong, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The current food insecurity in Karamoja region has forced farmers to sell off farm equipment, including the recently distributed ox ploughs to scrap dealers so as to buy food.

Early this year, the Office of the Prime Minister distributed hand hoes and ox ploughs to families in the region to boost agriculture, however, many farmers are selling off the inputs as scrap metal to raise money.

On Friday, URN came across some farmers in Kaabong selling off ox ploughs as scrap at 30,000 Shillings yet on the market, the ox ploughs cost between 130,000 to 200,000 Shillings.

Mark Teko, one of the farmers who was selling his in Kaabong town council told URN that it was useless for him to keep the plough without bulls to be used yet he’s hungry.

“It was donated but I don’t have bulls for ploughing because all the animals I had have been raided, so how can I keep the hoe in my house when am hungry?” He asked.

Agnes Moru, another farmer in Kotido district said she also sold three hand hoes given to her three months ago by Operation Wealth Creation.

“With this insecurity and sunshine which wealth can we create to be honest?” she asked. “People are not even able to go to their gardens because of insecurity.”

Jino Meri, the Kaabong district chairperson said the situation is worse and appealed to the government to rescue the region with relief food distribution.

Paul Lokol, the LCV chairperson Nabilatuk district said many families can now hardly afford a meal.

“Our offices are always full of people coming crying of hunger yet we can’t do much to support them,” he said.

This not the first time hunger is hitting Karamoja region, as every year, the region always faces hunger due to erratic rainfall.

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URN

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