Africa News Bulletin

Namibia: NAU facilitates emergency grazing for north-west

THE Namibia Agricultural Union (NAU) is facilitating emergency grazing for farmers in certain areas in north-western Namibia that have received very little or no rain and consequently have no pastures left.

According to the latest issue of the NAU newsletter, the situation in the Outjo area is dire, although there is hope that possible rainfall in March and April could bring relief to some areas.

“The NAU puts farmers who need grazing and those who offer grazing in contact with each other. In early 2020, a similar service was launched when southern farmers found themselves in the same difficult circumstances due to the ongoing drought. This action paid off and many union members could be assisted by this effort,” said the newsletter.

The union reported on the situation in various areas with farms west and south of Kamanjab having received good rainfall of up to 100mm last month.

The feeling among farmers is that if follow-up rains come in March, the grazing may recover and farmers may pull through.

“However, farms east of Kamanjab received much less rain, and even if it rains in March, this area will find it challenging to get through the year,” said the union.

The Biermanskool area, where only three active cattle farms amid several game farms are left, received at least 100mm in February, and farmers are hopeful of follow-up rains this month, which will give them the opportunity to graze throughout the year.

“This area therefore expects a fair year, provided follow-up precipitation occurs,” said the newsletter.

Farms in the Otjikondo area have received varying amounts of rain and some are on their way to 200 mm of rain, while others are far below this.

The strip of farms along the tarred road from Outjo to Kamanjab is still receiving too little rain.

Farmers, however, feel that rain in March could drastically improve their situation for the rest of the year.

Excelsior FA is currently experiencing the biggest challenge regarding the rainy season.

Insufficient rain has fallen, but if it should rain in March, farmers would have more time to plan for their survival.

Some of the farmers here have already started making bush feed from dry bushes and have also started buying bales of grass.

Farmers of this area may need to start looking for rental grazing or other assistance.

Any NAU members in the north-west commercial area who are suffering from drought and are looking for grazing, or farmers who have grazing available are urged to contact the union.

Original story on Namibian

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