The Northern Cape Department of Agriculture says the R300 million pledge for drought relief in the province by Minister of Water and Sanitation, Lindiwe Sisulu, will be used for funding alternative water sources such as drilling boreholes in drought stricken areas.

This as 60% of the province has been declared severe drought areas.

“The money will be used for funding alternative water sources such as drilling of boreholes and water technology in farms across the province. This intervention will enable us to mitigate the devastating impact of the drought on the economy of the province and food security,’ says Zandisile Luphahla, Department of Agriculture Spokesperson.

Meanwhile, farmers’ unions in the Northern Cape have welcomed the pledge with scepticism.

“The drought is really affecting us because there is no grazing so the R300 million is not really doing anything for us especially for livestock farmers. But for water, it will assist,” says Sehularo Sehularo, Saam Werk, Saam Trek Chairperson.

“We didn’t expect that it will only be for water and sanitation. The need for farmer assistance for all farmers in the Northern Cape in terms of fodder is still a reality,” says Nicol Jansen, Agri Northern Cape.

Watch a related video below: