Radio Ergo audience feedback report, 17 March 2022 – Somalia

As drought continues across the country, the calls to Radio Ergo’s independent feedback platform this week (9-15 March 2022) were mostly related to the impact and suffering caused by prevailing conditions. In terms of numbers, there were more calls from northern regions with Togdher and Sanag being the highest.
Puntland, Galmudug, and southern regions also produced significant numbers of calls. People generally spoke about the lack of water, thirst among families, inability to keep their livestock alive, the spread of disease among livestock, loss of livelihoods, and helplessness. Farmers in riverine areas said they had no water for their farms. Many callers were concerned by the rise in prices of fuel, water, and food. There was an increase in calls from people asking for advice and treatment for sick livestock. The following summarises the calls by theme from the different regions.

Drought effects – from Somaliland, callers in various parts of Awdal described lack of water, depleted vegetation, and dying animals. One said the government was focusing on elections and politics at the expense of their lifelines. A caller in Adadley, Marod Jeh, said there were disease outbreaks including diarrhoea.
Many of the Togdher callers came from Buhodle, where they said drought and water shortage were severe and livestock were feeble. Most called for government intervention. Callers in Burao said their livestock were starving and water prices were too high. Another Togdher caller said their livestock could barely reach the well to drink. A caller in Sahil said they had no market for their drought-hit animals and commodity prices were rising. Among many callers from Sanag, a pastoralist in Erigabo said they had been moving about with their camels looking for fodder and the herd was in a dire condition. A female caller in Garadag said their hardship was severe. Another said most animals had died and the rest were lying helpless. In Sool, a caller said their livestock could no longer walk to get water. A caller said the Somaliland government had neglected the people living in rural areas. In Puntland, several callers in Bari called on government and aid agencies to help. Callers in Karkar said they faced drought, water shortage, and rising prices of everything due to fuel prices hikes. One Puntland caller said he used to have 300 goats with only 76 remaining, and six or seven goats dying each day. In Mudug, a female caller said the remaining water was bitter. Another said there were no pumps to extract water from the wells. In Galgadud, a female caller in Bangeele said she wanted to tell all those hearing their voices that they had no water and needed aid. A caller near Adado said water cost two dollars a tank. Another in Adado said rising prices were unbearable. A female caller in Awrla said their animals had died and they feared losing people too. In Mogadishu, a caller said they were IDPs displaced from different regions lacking shelter, food, and other basics. Several callers in Hiran said they needed aid due to the prolonged drought. A farmer in Beletweyne said the river level had dropped and they had no water for their farms. Another said the farms had dried up so food was short. In Baidoa, a female caller said people were thirsty and they needed help. In Bardera, Gedo, a caller said the pumps could no longer draw any water as the river Juba was drying up. Another said water trucking services were inadequate for everybody.

Livestock – there were more calls this week asking for veterinary help. Some reported that starving goats were feeding off the hair of other animals. A female caller in Godinlabe, Mudug, said her goats had goatpox which was causing them suffering and death and she needed treatment.

Locusts – Three callers from Sanag, Sool and Nugal said they had been invaded by locusts.

Environment – several callers noted their concerns over environmental degradation, deforestation, unmanaged waste disposal, and the effects of climate change on the current drought. Radio Ergo’s weekly environment programme has generated quite a lot of discussion.

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