KAMPALA, June 10 (Xinhua) — China on Wednesday donated an assortment of chemicals and equipment to Uganda in the fight against desert locusts that experts warn are threatening food security in the east African country.
Zheng Zhuqiang, Chinese ambassador to Uganda handed over the donation to Vincent Ssempijja, Uganda’s minister of agriculture at a function held here.
Minister Ssempijja thanked China for the donation in the fight against the destructive migratory insects.
“It (donation) will take us very far in this effort of ensuring food security for the people of Uganda,” Ssempijja said.
Ambassador Zheng said the donation is part of China’s continued cooperation with Uganda in the agriculture sector, which is the country’s major economic activity.
He said the 20 tonnes of chemicals and equipment is aimed at boosting Uganda’s efforts in minimizing the impact of the desert locusts.
The donation included 10 tons Malathion ULV, 10 tons Malathion EC, 500 back pack mist dusters, 500 hand held ULV sprayers, 2,000 medical coveralls, 2,000 medical protective masks, and 2,000 pairs of gloves.
According to the ministry of agriculture, the country has experienced three waves of desert locust invasion from neighboring Kenya since this year started. The swarms have spread to 26 districts in the country.
Uganda has already deployed over 2,000 soldiers and 835 civilian personnel, including agriculture extension officers.