East Africa fears second wave – of locust swarms

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New swarms of desert locusts are threatening the livelihoods of millions of people in the Horn of Africa and Yemen despite a year of control efforts, the United Nations has warned.

The UN says there have been good breeding conditions in eastern Ethiopia and Somalia, with Kenya also at risk.

And breeding underway on both sides of the Red Sea poses a new threat to Eritrea, Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

“For Kenya, the threat is imminent, it could happen any time now,” Keith Cressman, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation’s senior locust forecasting officer told.

Between January and August this year East Africa saw billions of the insects destroying crops across the region.

“We lost so much of our pastures and vegetation because of the locusts and as a result we are still losing a good number of our livestock,” said Gonjoba Guyo, a pastoralist in North Horr sub-country in northern Kenya.