A couple of months ago, news spread that Kenya had been overwhelmed by locusts. And barely two months after the Ministry of Agriculture declared Kenya locusts free, the country has reported a second wave; fresh swarms of the desert locusts were sported in Taita Taveta, Mandera and Wajir counties.
Peter Munya, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary, said the second wave of the insects was looming due to the widespread breading in eastern Ethiopia and central Somalia. “It was earlier projected that when the Southerly winds start in December 2020, then we might experience a second wave. This is the worst time for the invasion since the crops are very young.”
Farmers from Ngulia, Paranga, Ghazi, Ndii and Mbololo in Taita Taveta county have expressed fears of an impending loss after the insects attacked their young crops.
With all these going on, the national government has, however, remained optimistic that it is well prepared to combat the locust’s second wave. Munya confirmed a KSh 3.2 billion set aside to fumigate the regions affected by the swarms and their eggs. He also added that the government had in place 216,000 liters of spray chemicals and a military plane already in the affected counties. And the National Youth Service (NYS) had also been deployed to helping in fighting the insects.
The United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) had earlier warned of a second wave of locust invasion in Kenya.
The growing locusts will hit fully in December.