FARMERS IN SOUTH AFRICA’S NORTHERN CAPE PROVINCE PRAY FOR RAIN

While some other parts of South Africa have experienced floods this week, farmers in the country's Northern Cape Province are praying for rain.

The African Farmers Association of South Africa in the Northern Cape says some 30 farmers it represents have quit the farming sector as a result of the persistent drought and inadequate rainfall. Last year, South Africa faced its worst ever drought in memory and the province is one of the eight declared drought disaster areas.

Consumers are heavily dependent on farmers for food security and their livestock for meat and if farmers are faced with a dire situation, so are consumers.

South Africa is still recovering from the worst drought it experienced last year. Farmers nationwide lost millions of Rand worth of crops and livestock in the process and some of them have resorted to holding prayer sessions to seek divine intervention.

The government has also intervened by putting aside a relief fund of 20 million Rand (about 1.43 million US dollars) for the farmers. Although everybody played their part to ensure the farmers get back on their feet again, it now seems as if the situation is deteriorating.

The farmers in Northern Cape say the drought has had an enormous impact on them, their livestock and agrarian land. Mthuthuzeli Dondolo, a father of three, had to quit his farming activities. He says it has been a constant battle to stay afloat.

"The drought has had a huge impact on us, the small farmers, the animals and the veld. The veld is dry and farmers are many ... and they don't have enough money. I pray to God every day for rain, even if it's like the rain they got in Johannesburg recently," says Dondolo referring to the devastating floods in the country's financial capital.

Dondolo says this is a repeat of history to him as he also had a bad experience in 2013.

The President of the African Farmers Association of South Africa in the Northern Cape, Sehularo Sehularo, says farmers are constantly struggling. Even if they sell their livestock, it is not for profiting but to get rid of their threatened livestock.

"It is affecting farmers and their employees, because once you stop farming you can no longer have employees, so it's affecting us really bad."

Farmers say money won't be enough, and pin their hope on Mother Nature to save the day.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK.

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