CHIREDZI – The Government of India has donated five small grain thrashers to communities in Chiredzi South in a bid to promote small grains production and fight the effects of climate change.
The thrashers are one for five wards in that constituency.
The donation was done through a US$1 million programme where the Indian Government is working in partnership with World Food Programme (WFP) and Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO).
Speaking at the handover at Mhlanguleni Business Centre recently, Indian Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Vijay Khanduja said the donation was made possible by his country’s US$1 million donation for Climate Resilient Agriculture in Chiredzi and Mangwe districts.
“I am hopeful that the tripatite cooperation involving India, UN agencies like WFP and FAO will make a difference in the lives of farmers in Zimbabwe,” said Khanduja.
WFP deputy Country Director, Christine Mendes said they have been collectively empowering small holder farmers in rural areas to better prepare for climate change.
“We have been collectively empowering small holder farmers in rural areas to better prepare for climate hazards like recurring drought,” said Mendes.
At least 3 241 farmers in Chiredzi have benefited from this program.
Chiredzi is in climate region five where it receives an average of 585mm of rain per annum. The situation has been worsened by the effects of the climatic change.
The Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development, Anxious Masuka who was represented by Director of Agriculture Advisory and Rural Development Service (AARDS), Obert Juru lauded India and the UN arms for the support to farmers and said their intervention will go a long way in improving small grains farming in the district.
“We are very happy with your donation of five thrashers to wards 4, 9, 10,11 and 25. This will go a long way in promoting small grains farming in the district,” said Juru.
The programme also involves the training of Agritex Officers and farmers on how to produce small grains and storing them.
At least 6 000 farmers and 370 Agritex officers in 30 districts of the country have received training from WFP and a total of 58 000 farmers from 20 districts across the country received demo packs consisting of 2 bags of fertilizer, 5 kg bag of sorghum and 2.5kg bags of cow peas under the Pfumvudza programme. WFP also directly procures a portion of the surplus.
Minister of State for Masvingo, Ezra Chadzamira said the intervention will ensure that farmers in Chiredzi and Masvingo Province are capacitated to increase the production of small grains.https://masvingomirror.com