The Impact of Malaria on Crop Production in El-Zeidab Agricultural Scheme.

No Thumbnail Available
Ahmed, Abdelhamed Abdelrahim Mohamed
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
This study was conducted in Zeidab Agricultural Scheme (ZAS) in River Nile State 260 km North of Khartoum. The overall objective of this study is to investigate the impact of malaria on the productivity of the main crops in the scheme (wheat and dura) and consequently effects on the farmers' income. To achieve such purpose a linear production function that relates amount of yield to the factors of production and descriptive statistics as analytical tools were applied to primary data, which were collected through field survey from ZAS in season (2001-2002) using a simple random sample of a hundred farmers as a sample size. The statistical analysis of the socio-economic characteristics of the farmers revealed that, farmers are a homogenous group with respect to the level of education, the majority of them are within the productive age group. The study showed that malaria disease is highly common between farmers, reached a ratio of 70%, which was due to the suitable habitat to this kind of disease-carrier. However, the suitable environment was caused by the disorder and carelessness in maintaining infrastructure of the scheme like canals and irrigation regulators, blockages of irrigation canals with mud and weeds. Health services were inadequate in the scheme area compared to the disease incidents. However, the optimum number of working hours has a positive effect on productivity of the crops grown in the scheme. Some crops are more demanding in labour at different growth-stages. That means any disorder in the health condition of the farmers may negatively affect the productivity of the crop. The lost hours are due to malaria infection. There were (665) lost working hours in wheat farms, while in dura were (444) hours. All the lost working hours were related to the total working hours needed by the crops on the rotation. The lost working hours before medical diagnoses and treatment were more than those after treatment and the rest hours due to sickness, has a large negative effect on the productivity. The results of the regression analysis of wheat showed that the dura production, year income, the number of lost working hours and shortage of labour all have significant effect on wheat productivity. Moreover, the same result showed that the infection time had a negative effect on productivity of wheat but it was non significant at any level. Although the dura regression showed that the relief cost, lag wheat production, work hours and activities inside canals have significant effect on dura productivity at 99%, 95%, 90% and 90% respectively. Finally, the study recommended that ZAS authorities and farmers have to save annually a certain fund for maintaining and rehabilitating canals, canal clearance and other measures related to the irrigation system. To reduce the extent of water borne disease pests. Moreover, suitable sort of crops which do not require irrigation all over the year around have to be selected in the rotation. Eventually special preventive care and measures have to be taken for disease control, health extension and improvement and better development to the health services
Malaria, Crop Production, El-Zeidab ,agricultural Scheme