OMUTHIYA – A swarm of migratory locusts descended on the Eengodi constituency in the Oshikoto region on Wednesday.
The locusts were seen at the Ohayiyanda and Olumbilo villages, where they allegedly overnight and continued to move to the areas of Ominghono, Okambuwa and Oshalongo.
Oshikoto governor Penda ya Ndakolo said based on the reports provided from different areas, there is no major damage to crop fields, but just encouraged the community to be vigilant.
Constituency councillor Protasius Neshuku said they suspect the locusts came from the eastern Kavango West region. He could not link it to those that are terrorising crop fields in Ohangwena and Omuthiya for more than a week now. “I have not been personally to the affected areas, but I am told the locusts are causing extensive damage to crop fields, even though people are managing to scare them away,” said Neshuku.
He advised community members to be vigilant to scare them away as soon as they arrive to minimise damages to crops.
“I have spoken to officials of the ministry of agriculture to report the outbreak, but I was told they cannot make it here because they are busy addressing a similar calamity in Omusati,” added the councillor.
“We have engaged the authorities, so we are hoping by morning time, they are in our area so that they can be sprayed before migrating. For now, it’s difficult to kill them as they are flying,” said Omuthiya councillor Samuel Shivute who pinned his hopes on agricultural staff.
Meanwhile, agriculture ministry spokesperson Jona Musheko, said they are busy compiling a comprehensive report to provide the scope on the damage caused and which areas are affected.
“We are receiving many reports from different areas, therefore, we are busy with that so that we can provide more detail as to what we are doing in addressing the situation, as well as the affected areas and the damage thereof. This also includes the measures and mechanisms used to arrest the outbreak that occurred in Zambezi and Kavango regions where it started, in order to help the communities better fight the locusts,” briefly said Musheko.
By yesterday afternoon, a swarm of locusts was headed to villages of the Omuthiya constituency, situated a few kilometres away from the town. Two weeks back, they were spotted in the Guinas constituency before they disappeared into Etosha.
Locusts have been causing havoc in the Ohangwena region since Sunday and migrated to the Omusati region on Tuesday.
It is not certain whether it is the same swarm of locusts or different groups.