Tanzania faces long spells of drought, warns TMA

What you need to know:

The rainy season is expected to start next month and run through December in more than 10 regions.

Dar es Salaam. The Tanzania Metrological Authority (TMA) yesterday warned that the country faces drought in the forthcoming rainy season as indicators show many regions will receive rains below normal average.

In that regard, water scarcity might lead to outbreak of water borne diseases, power cuts and conflicts between farmers and pastoralists.

The rainy season is expected to start next month and run through December in more than 10 regions.

Regions that receive rains twice a year, but now face the adverse impacts of weather change include; Arusha, Manyara Kilimanjaro, Morogoro, Dar es Salaam, Coast, and Tanga.

Others are Unguja and Pemba isles, Lake Victoria basin (Kagera, Geita, Mwanza, Shinyanga, Simiyu and Mara regions) and the northern part of Kigoma (Kibondo and Kakonko districts).

The TMA acting director general, Mr Hamza Kabelwa, said the aforementioned regions will experience below average rains and a prolonged period of dry spell.

Mr Kabelwa called on the farmers to considering growing crops that are drought resistant.

“Rains are expected to be below normal to normal in many areas. The onset for these rains is expected to be in October and characterised by prolonged and high frequency dry spells, poor temporal distribution and progress. The end is expected in December,” he said.

He said on behalf of director general Agness Kijazi that people should brace for water borne diseases because of shortage of clean and safe water.

According to him, inadequate pasture and water could also result into conflicts between pastoralists and other land users.

“There is also a risk of forest fires, thus authorities are advised to prepare strategies to mitigate the associated impacts,” he said.

He urged several stakeholders look for alternative to ensure there is no sector affected during this period of time and farmer to grow crops that are drought resistant to avoid scarcity of food.

According to him, based on current and expected climate systems generally, below normal to normal rains are expected over most parts of bimodal rainfall areas.