AGRICULTURE

By Abdulmumin Murtala – Kano

As climate change continues to worsen in the northern parts of Nigeria, even as it is the rainy season, during which farmers look up to bumper harvests, lack of rainfall for weeks in Kano has led many farmers to lose their crops especially rice.

Rice which requires a consistent water supply has been left without the usual daily rainfalls for several weeks and the plants are drying out.

In some places where the farms are located close to water sources like rivers, ponds and water channels, or even boreholes, farmers are seen using the sources to water their farms, a very unusual sight during the wet season.

An unestimated amount of loss has so far been compiled in the affected farm areas where their food items have dried out due to lack of water.

The Chairman of Tudun Wada Rice Farmers Association in Kano, Malam Husaini Muhammad, told Vanguard that they are already losing two-third of their products to insufficient rainfall and are not likely to harvest the remaining one-third of what they have planted.

“We are faced with a lot of challenges this season. There is verse scarcity of water due to lack of rain.

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“To be honest with you, from what we have estimated, we have lost two-thirds of what we planted this season. It is only one-third that we are hoping to harvest if we are lucky.

“Even what is remaining presently, we have to be pumping water from a nearby village through channels to water what has remained in our farms.

“Presently there are even places where there is no water at all and they are likely to lose everything.

“In addition to this, there are no good tools for watering the farms in the hands of the farmers. It is only God that can save the situation.

“The ultimate is that we are going to lose two-thirds of what we have planted because they have all dried up and there is not enough water to revive them.

“This is definitely going to affect the price of the product subsequently. Already the price has started rising because the quantity of the one already harvested is not much,” he stated.

Talking about how this will affect the price of rice, in particular, another farmer Malam Ahmad Kura explained that the price will definitely inflate and it will be more expensive.

“The losses encountered due to lack of rainfall this season will make the price of rice rise.

“We have prayed for rain and are continuing to pray so that we can get something to reduce the loss we are facing.

“Even at present what we have harvested that was sold at N12,000 to N13,000 to the millers is now being sold at 16,000 to them,” he said.

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