Govt declares national emergency to battle locust threat
ISLAMABAD: On Friday the government decided to impose a national emergency to protect the crops in the wake of the danger of locusts that are swarming throughout the country’s agricultural domain.
Prime Minister Imran Khan today chaired a high-level meeting that was called to address the problem of locust. A National Action Plan (NAP) was agreed to eradicate the scourge while a high-level committee was also set up to develop an effective federal-level plan to get rid of the threat from different parts of the country.
PM Imran said the security of farmers and agriculture is the government’s top priority.
Under the program, federal, regional, and district level responsibilities were allocated while the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) was also given tasks to curb the danger. The committee will be chaired by Secretary National Food Safety Division. In this regard, the federal government will be providing all necessary resources.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) warned in the first week of September 2019 that the locusts situation in Pakistan was “most serious” as the insect’s second generation had been bred.
According to the Locust Watch report of the FAO, there is still a risk of further breeding, which will lead to an increase in the number of locusts, with the possibility of swarming from late September.