Neo

Cassava streak hits Nebbi

CASSAVA brown streak disease has hit Nebbi district, destroying over 33 acres of cassava gardens under the National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) programme.

Anthony Okwir, the district production coordinator, said the cassava variety (T.M.E 204) that was supplied for food security had been affected.

Okwir identified the three worst hit sub-counties as Wadelai, Nebbi and Erussi, which are known to be the food baskets for the region.

“We are working hard to contain the disease before it spreads further,” Okwir said.

According to Okwir, the disease is spread through propagation of infected cuttings and by a white fly vector (Bemisiatabaci).

Okwir said an infected cassava tuber shows a corky and yellow-brown necrotic root.

He urged farmers in the district to burn all the cassava stalks from gardens that have been infected.

“We have set a committee to see that the disease does not spread in the district by restricting the replanting of the infected stalk,” Okwir said.

Betty Adima, the resident district commissioner, called for help from the relevant ministries.

Geoffrey Orom, a farmer in Erussi sub-county, said: “We are worried and the Government needs to intervene to avert this situation, otherwise we predict shortage of food in the region.”

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