North West optimistic recent rainfall will ease drought situation...

Mmabatho- The North West Provincial Government is hopeful that the rainfall that is being experienced across the province will ease the drought that has been described as one of the worst droughts the province has seen in many years.

According to the South African Weather Services, there is a good chance of more rainfall across the province over the next seven days.

“This week we are expecting 60 percent chance of rain across the whole province. On Thursday and Friday, there is 60 to 80 percent chance of rainfall in the eastern parts of the province, which include areas such as Potchefstroom, Rustenburg, Mahikeng and Klerksdorp,” said Weather Forecaster Christiana Thaele. 

Thaele said the Province could expect up to 40 mm of rainfall in these areas.

Head of the Provincial Disaster Management Centre,Jackie Rikhotso welcomed the news and said that the province will need at least three good rainy seasons to return to normalcy.

“We are still deep in the drought situation. Dams in Schweizer-Reneke and Swartruggens are completely dry. We have 157 families that are depending on tankered water. We lost about 30 percent of crop yield and experienced 40 000 of livestock mortality,” explained Rikhotso.

He said they have allocated R 38 million for agricultural drought intervention to support 29 000 farmers in the province after Premier Supra Mahumapelo declared the province a drought disaster area in terms of the Disaster Management Act.