• September 20th, 2018
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Buffaloes: Who feels it knows it

Columns, Comment
Columns, Comment

The ban of the movement of animals in the Okakarara communal areas and surrounding commercial farms in April, as a result of the sighting of a buffalo in the village of Okarui was lifted and the marketing of animals should have by now returned to normality. But there is no way the marketing of livestock, let alone farming, especially animal husbandry, shall ever be normal again, especially in the communal areas of the Okakarara Constituency. This is because the banning of the movement of animals seems now a constant, as long as buffaloes remain a constant, a constant that has been stretching for more than nine years now in both the regions of Otjozondjupa and Omaheke. The lifting of any subsequent restriction after the recurrence of buffaloes thus being in this day and age, only a temporary reprieve. A rule rather than an exception. The selling price that the Okakarara Constituency recently experienced after close to two months of starvation due to the ban, when animals reportedly fetched an all time high of N$47 a kilogramme, cannot really speak of and to a return to normality. Not as long as any seeming solution to the problem of the recurrence of buffaloes resemblances no more than a mere treatment of the symptoms if in the least a prevention of the original ill if not total eradication of the ill. When any solution remains only a quick fix, if close to two months which farmers in the Okakarara Constituency recently had to endure before again marketing their animals, could be called a quick fix. Yes it may be business as usual for the powers that be. But not for the farmers, especially those who lately after the recurrence of buffaloes in both regions, established the Onyati Pressure Group on May 17. Since farmers from these two regions, the recent banning of the restrictions in the Okakarara Constituency notwithstanding, have vowed and are vowing to continue to exert the necessary pressure by constantly appealing to the powers that be to seek an everlasting solution to the recurrence of buffaloes in their grazing areas. Burned and burdened by resultant economic disturbance wrought about by the banning of the movement of animals. Since its establishment, the group’s leaders have urgently been seeking audience with the highest office, the Office of the President, but to no avail. Ultimately, due to the busy schedule of the Head of State, they have been referred to the Office of the Presidency. Cognisant of the busy schedule of head of state, nevertheless the buffalo-endangered farmers cannot but continue to feel that somehow a serious matter as theirs may be, that of the recurrence of buffaloes in their farming areas, has not been getting its due attention. Despite negatively impacting on their farming activities, which to them is a bread and butter issue as the only means of substance and subsistence. Thus how they have not been able to secure such the necessary audience with the head of state that they crave for, cannot go down well with them nor can they really be expected to understand their seeming obvious neglect in this regard. This notwithstanding, they have been resolute, firm and determined that this matter must be solved for good. And only the highest national public office can do this, given the experience of the past. It is not a matter of whether any lasting solution may have been experimented but has not worked. A lasting solution simply has never existed because those responsible have simply not seemed to ever have bothered about it. Nothing has been tried and tested in this regard, period. Hence understandably the loss of all trust, confidence and believe by grassroots famers in all levels of leadership but the highest, the head of state. Hence their appeal bid to the highest office this time around, by themselves rather than their said leaders in whom they no longer have any iota of trust, confidence and believe. Because if there is anything, the buffaloes recurrence in the communal areas that has been tried and tested, it is none other than the will of the various leaders of every hue. Tried, tested and found to awfully wanting, if altogether not indifferent, disinterested and unconcerned in meaningfully, purposefully and for a long time, if not ever, solving this matter. There cannot be any question of the leaders not being aware of the existence of the problem of buffaloes. Not when the problem has been there for more than nine years now, with cause being very well known to these leaders, and as much the dire consequences to the farmers. The simple and hard truth is that the leaders cannot and do not feel it. How then may and can they be expected to will to attend to an ever lasting solution?
2018-06-29 09:56:53 2 months ago
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