Only three out of 11 cattle given to cattle farmers in North Malaita by the government this month survived, farmers in the area have revealed.
Jeremy Sutaloa of Suidara spoke to SIBC News on behalf of three farmers in the area whose cattle died almost immediately after they were delivered by the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock on October 13.
Mr Sutaloa said his sister, Annette Agorau, and two other farmers received a total of eleven cattle from the ministry, and eight of them died.
He said the farmers appreciate the government’s support through the cattle project, but they want the dead cows to be replaced.
In response, Senior Livestock Officer for Malaita Province Nelson Bofelo said hot weather was a factor in the deaths of the cattle.
Mr Bofelo said the animals were inside a truck for about twelve hours as they were transported from the government’s multiplication unit farm in West Kwaio to North Malaita.
He said the cattle that died will be replaced early next year when funding is available for the next round of distribution.
“The re-stocking may be distributed on farms according to the number of hectares each one has,” he said.