Some two months ago, the Tanzania Meteorological Authority (TMA) warned that most parts of the country would experience medium to below average rainfall, something that would likely affect agricultural production as well as animal rearing.
On Monday, Vice President Philip Mpango directed the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries Development as well as local government authorities to build livestock feed production and processing facilities to reduce scarcity during famine.
Dr Mpango also directed the construction of dams across the country for the purpose of harvesting rain water that normally go to waste. mThe directives are timely given the fact that there are reports, particularly from Manyara Region, that livestock are dying for lack of water and food. This indeed is causing much stress to herders and the surrounding communities.
It is crucial that the directives be taken seriously because if properly executed, the outcomes would boost food security in the country for both humans and livestock.
On another note, it is crucial that expert advice be taken seriously because most of the time what they advise results from extensive research work. The advice on the need to harvest rain water has been given many times, but it appears that most of the time this falls on deaf ears. It is our hope that now this advice has come from the Vice President, then the relevant authorities, particularly the dockets responsible with environment, agriculture, livestock as well as local government would start acting immediately so that we would see results in the next one year or so.
As for farmers and herders, they must also follow closely expert advice on what and when to plant crops, as well as ensuring that they observe best agricultural practices and make proper storage of what they harvest.
Herders need to explore keeping modern breeds that are more productive but which can also resist diseases. They must keep them in numbers that they can effectively attend to even during food scarcity times.
EDUCATE PEOPLE ON JABS
The response to vaccination and prevention against Civid-19 has been explained to be minimal in Coast Region, despite the government and various stakeholders urging the community to take precautionary measures against the disease.
This could be those responsible for pvoviding education about vaccination have not played their role well in making sure that every member of the public gets the jab.
Another thing that has contributed to the low number of residents of the region to get vaccinated is that they have been misinformed about the Covid-19 vaccine.
It is time that misinformation about the Covid-19 vaccine was allayed before the exercise becomes a flop as the public need to be educated well before they decide to get vaccinated.
However, it is encouraging to learn that experts and clerics have waded into the vaccination drive by urging the residents of the region to get vaccinated.
According to Coast Regional Medical Officer Gunini Kamba, the region’s goal is to vaccinate 795,511 people by June 2022, but so far only 75,887 people have been vaccinated, which is equivalent to 9.54 percent of the regional target.
So, we call upon other stakeholders and well-wishers to take up the role of educating the community so that everyone can get vaccinated against the disease.