31 Mar 2014 18:40pm
ONESI, 31 MAR (NAMPA) - The Environment Investment Fund (EIF) is sponsoring 10 community groups to introduce mopane worm projects in the Omusati Regions Uukolonkadhi Traditional District as from this month.
The mopane worm (omagungu) project centres will be established by Jesaja Nakuumba, John Kadhila, Alina Kandume, Ismael Nathingo, Ruth Kiiyala, Otjorute, Ruacana, Eendjokwe, Osithashembungu and Eenghalashe.
The individual projects are named after the leaders and areas of the various groups.
The idea to establish omagungu farming came about last year, and a total of 60 community members are thus far involved.
The first beneficiaries who received their materials on Friday were Jesaja Nakuumba, John Kadhila, Alina Kandume, Ismael Nathingo and Ruth Kiiyala.
Donated materials include wire for fencing, poles, gates, spades and watering containers, which were handed over at the Onesi settlements Uukolonkadhi Traditional Authority office on Friday.
The Omusati Region is full of mopane/omusati trees, which are used by mopani worms to breed.
Members of the Mopane Worm Projects are expected to collect the larva and start breeding them, using available mopane trees in their respective project centres.
The Mopane Worm Projects fall under the Uukolonkadhi Community Forest, headed by Nestor Ipinge, and they are under the supervision of the Namibia Development Trust.
Ipinge said during the event on Friday that the idea is to produce omagungu on a commercial basis for local and outside markets.
Project members were trained last year in leadership and finance management and, apart from omagungu farming, they are also expected to incorporate weaving of traditional baskets and silos.
The projects' members have contributed N.dollars 50 000 towards the establishment of the 10 centres and all their omagungu farming activities, while the EIF has set aside N.dollars 550 000 for the same purpose.
Meanwhile, omagungu production and marketing is popular in Zimbabwe.