THE advent of the rainy season, although somewhat late, has seen many farmers in the Ohangwena region scrambling to prepare and plough their fields in anticipation of planting an abundance of mahangu.
The planting season also saw many tractor owners using their equipment to plough the fields of their neighbours and friends.
To plough a field for cultivating grain costs the farmer about N$500 per hour while the Namibian Government charges farmers N$300 per hour for the use of their machinery.
While the price charged by the agriculture ministry is much cheaper, farmers make use of privately owned tractors because they cannot afford to wait for long periods sometimes involved with the government’s equipment.
With some rains that have already fallen over parts of the north many farmers in the Ohangwena Region, especially those from the areas of Ondobe, Okatope, Etomba, Etope, Odibo, and other villages are hoping that the rain in the New Year will be better than last year.
One farmer said that this year he is choosing to use a hired tractor to till his land because the drought has left his oxen weak to do the work in the traditional way.
This year we will rely on the tractors we can hire,” Hanenha Shikongo, a farmer, said while a contractor was busy ploughing his mahangu field.
Many farmers, like Shikongo, have high hopes for a bumper harvest as a better rainy season than last year has been predicted.