Wetland Encroachers Urged to embrace Sustainable Land Management.Tobias Habasa
By Alex Byakatonda
As Government continues to evict people from wetlands to vacate them, Stephen Katabaazi, an Agricultural expert, working with ESCOBER UGANDA LTD, has called on farmers, to embrace Climate Smart Agriculture, so a means to utilize the uplands sustainably.
Katabaazi was on Friday addressing Agricultural extension workers and other stakeholders from Kyanamira and Buhara sub counties in the Kabale District Rukiiko.
He noted that ESCOBER UGANDA LTD, has been contracted by the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, to train and equip the Agricultural extension workers, with the skills so that they can pass them onto the farmers to help them adapt to other Agricultural practices like apiary, fishing farming and zero grazing and increase on production and productivity.
According to Katabaazi, the evictees need to embrace integrated soil fertility management and agroforestry in order to achieve sustainable land management. He noted that Kigezi region has been experiencing changes in weather patterns, like prolonged rains and sunshine and invasion of pests and diseases as a result of prolonged drought, which has resulted from poor Agricultural practices.
The Kabale District Environmental officer, Evas Asiimwe, said that the training was organized under the project dubbed,” Building Resilient Communities, Wetland Ecosystems associated catchments in Uganda.
The project is aimed at restoring wetlands that have been degraded in the country by poor Agricultural practices and encroachment. In Kabale, the project is being implemented along the Kyanamira-Kabanynyi Catchment area along River Kiruruma in Kyanamira and Buhara sub counties.
This wetland has been degraded by human activities, like poor Agricultural practices, leading to soils eroded down into the river. Asiimwe added that under, the program, the evictees have been given alternatives livelihoods by government through the ministry of water and Environment in partnership with MAAIF like pig and goat rearing. MAAIF is also constructing an irrigation scheme to help people in uplands.
According to Asiimwe, the two ministries have also partnered with Uganda National Meteorological Authority-UNMA, which has conducted trainings on early warnings and is set to be giving advisories, during every season.