Tuesday November 10, 2020
A desert locust plucked from the swarm on farmland in the Galmudug region, Somalia. Photo credit: Reuters
A Desert Locust Storm
Somalia is seeing a desert locust invasion, the latest in the series of these pest storms that have been overwhelming several other East African countries this year. Exacerbating food shortages amid the unprecedented and already challenging covid-19 pandemic.
Abdullahi Ahmed, a Somali camel herder, shares his disconcerting experience with the locust infestation, “Here we are in the Daynile district. This morning, a large number of locusts invaded and since then they have been eating the grass intended for our livestock, forcing us to beat corrugated iron sheets to disperse them, so we are calling the government to help us fight these locusts.”
Regional Food Insecurity
Mohamed Abubakar Jafar, Commissioner of Mogadishu’s Daynile District, is ready to take action, “We see that the locusts are destroying the farms and we should fight back against them. That is inevitable.”
Massive efforts have already been made in the region to control the infestation with the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations also stepping in to alleviate the food crisis.