Food crisis looms as Kano farmers count losses
Kano farmers have expressed worry as the rainy season seemed to have come to an end abruptly. The situation has made it difficult for most of the farmers to achieve expected harvests.
The rainy season/planting in Kano usually starts in June and ends in October, but the 2021 season came as a shock to the farmers, when rain seized in September, perhaps due to devastating effects of climate change following global warming.
An investigation by The Guardian revealed that Kano had not experienced such a disruption in the last 20 years, and this compelled some northern emirs to direct residents to offer special prayers against drought.
Some of the affected farmers in all the 44 local government areas of Kano witnessed a decrease in this year’s harvests due to early seizure of rainfalls across Kano, Jigawa, Sokoto, Bauchi and Katsina States and some part of Republic of Niger.
A farmer in Baugauda in Garin Mallam area, Yushau Ahmad, said he had lost lots of resources due to rain shortage, and sounded pessimistic that the problem would result in shortage of food in the country.
“As subsistence a farmer, I planted sorghum, maize, rice and beans. And as you can see, nobody would get half of what he got last year. This is a serious financial loss,” he added.
He further lamented that he invested more than N200,000 in the business to ensure food security for his household, but he realised less than half of what he expected.
One of the rice farmers, Surajo Muhammad, in Garin Mallam Local Government, told The Guardian that the level of food crisis faced now might become worse.
“We do not know where to go, neither do we have any other means of survival,” he lamented. Another farmer, Sulaimanu Hussaini, in Dawakin Kudu Local Government Area, said rainfalls seized when his maize and beans needed water most, adding that he had to look elsewhere to meet the need of his family.
“As a peasant farmer, I planted maize, guinea corn, and millet and I spent more than N100,000, but unfortunately, I lost everything due to lack of sufficient rains,” he lamented.
Expressing further fears, the speaker of Kano State House of Assembly, Hamisu Ibrahim Chidari, raised the alarm over the need to expedite action to assuage the challenge being faced by the farmers in the state.
Chidari, who spoke during budget presentation, said, the assembly was fully aware of the challenge caused by drought as one of the effects of climate change, expressing the need for urgent action.
“Farmers in rural areas are facing threat of food shortage due to drought, we as leaders must evolve ways to assuage the problem to avoid food crisis,” he warned.