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WC govt in talks to secure more funding for struggling farmers

Even though the worst of the drought is over in most parts of the province, farmer still rely on aid from the national disaster fund.

Farms in the Western Cape are suffering under the current drought.  Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Agriculture Department is negotiating with the national government to secure further funding for drought-hit farmers.

Even though the worst of the drought is over in most parts of the province, farmers still rely on aid from the national disaster fund.

Over the weekend, it emerged the fodder relief fund meant to help farmers feed their livestock had run out.

The drought has broken in many parts of the province and soaking rains have revitalised grazing land.

But Agri Western Cape CEO Jannie Strydom said many places were taking longer to bounce back.

It's in those areas that farmers need help feeding their livestock while they wait for vegetation to grow back.

In addition to areas that were taking longer to recover, some parts of the province were still affected by the drought.

Department spokesperson Daniel Johnson said those areas would be given priority.

“What is left is about R12 million. The money will be allocated to farmers where the drought is severe.”

Johnson added that the department was in the process to get further assistance from the relevant national departments.