In northeastern Uganda, Karimajong pastoralists smile through the rainy season when their herds are healthy and strong. The rainy season brings brings lots of pasture and water to the region mostly known for its arid conditions.
There is concern when the lush vegetation turns to scorched and bare earth – the dry season. Longer dry spells attributed to a changing climate have worsened conditions for pastoralists and have hit Karamoja’s cattle economy hard.
A government campaign is targeted principally at dissuading herders to abandon pastoralism for crop farming.
Africanews journalist, Ronald Kato reports that many national and local authorities have openly voiced opposition to pastoralism and sought to contain movements in search of water and pasture during the dry seasons.
Karamoja has battled decades of underdevelopment. Now activists and pastoralists fear that a negative government policy and climate change may be conspiring to bring an end to a phenomenal way of life.