Namibia begins pesticide spraying to end locust infestation threatening its crop-producing regions

Credit: Ben Curtis/AP
Credit: Ben Curtis/AP

Swarms of migratory locusts invaded fields in Kavango East and West… destroying crops and other vegetation in their wake, and diminished the last hope for a good harvest.

Rundu rural constituency councillor Paulus Mbangu confirmed the incident on [March 7], saying the locusts which started from Mukwe constituency have spread to other constituencies with some migrating to other regions.

Mbangu said the locusts have been in the area for about a week.

“All constituencies in the region are now infested with locusts. They are destroying our crops and diminishing the last hope of a good harvest which has already been affected by rain. We need urgent help. This could be a catastrophe if not addressed urgently,” Mbangu said.

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The executive director in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform, Percy Misika, also confirmed the locust invasion which he said was recorded at Divundu.

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He said the ministry has since sent a team of experts to assess the situation and start spraying pesticides in the affected areas.

The recent locust invasion in the Kavango regions followed a similar outbreak of the African migratory red locust which attacked fields in the Zambezi region from August last year, destroying more than 5 000 hectares of green fields.

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