07 Jul 2015 12:50pm
WINDHOEK, 07 JUL (NAMPA) - The Ministry of Agriculture Water and Forestry (MAWF) is ready to spend the N.dollars 74 million allocated for Livestock Drought Relief measures.
A media statement issued by the ministry's acting Permanent Secretary (PS), Abraham Nehemia on Monday indicated that farmers who sold their livestock from the 01 March 2015 due to drought qualify for an incentive.
Nehemia said a livestock marketing incentive of N.dollars 400 per cattle for a maximum of 200 cattle, and N.dollars 80 per goat or sheep to a maximum of 1 000 small stock or a combination of the two may be given per farmer.
He explained that in order to qualify, the beneficiary (farmer) is required to submit proof of sale and complete a declaration that he or she experienced drought on the farm.
These documents must be submitted with a claim form for the marketing incentive to be paid.
The Livestock Marketing Incentive Scheme will continue until the field conditions have recovered or the budget is exhausted, he said.
All forms and relevant documents are available at any Directorate of Agricultural Production, Extension and Engineering Services (DAPEES) office as from 22 June 2015. All applications for incentive must include a certified copy of the farmer's ID, passport or driver's license
He said farmers will also have to submit a proof of payment, verification documents from traditional authorities, and a movement permit duplicate from the Directorate of Veterinary Services (DVS), if applicable.
A Meat Board export permit where direct export to neighbouring countries was made will also have to be provided.
He noted that farmers in the Northern Communal Areas (NCA), except Zambezi Region, qualify for all benefits as from the 01st March this year until the 15 May, when the official ban on livestock movement was placed by the ministry due to the Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD outbreak.
Farmers in Zambezi Region however qualify as from 27 May 2015 to participate in the approved drought mitigation measures.
He said farmers will be disqualified from the Livestock Marketing Incentive Scheme if they bought livestock for farming, speculation or joint venture purposes from the 01 March, with the exception of farmers who bought male breeding stock.
Nehemia stressed that only transactions from the 01 March 2015 will qualify and that affected farmers who want to lease emergency grazing will be assisted by a 50 per cent subsidy of the lease fee to a maximum of N.dollars 40 per head per month for a maximum of 100 cattle.
The same applies to small livestock to a maximum of N.dollars 5 per small stock unit per month to a maximum of 500 small stock units. A lease agreements as well as a receipt for grazing fees paid should accompany the application.
Those farmers will be assisted with a transport subsidy of 50 per cent of the kilometre (km) tariff to a maximum of N.dollars 16 per km for truck and N.dollars 4 per km for light duty vehicle (LDV). The minimum load is 17 large livestock or 100 small stock while the maximum distance to be subsidised will not exceed 500km.
The MAWF reported in April this year that an oversupply of livestock in the market led to action pens being filled beyond buyers capacities, which also led to a decrease in the prices of cattle and other livestock. Farmers started selling their livestock as a matter of urgency.
Nehemia visited the northern parts of Namibia in April and saw that livestock there are in an emaciated condition but said there were no official reports of death of livestock from regional governors.
Since early November last year, infrequent and below-average rainfall in parts of Namibia has resulted in abnormal dryness.
The situation has prompted Cabinet to approve short, medium and long-term measures to mitigate the impact of drought in Namibia.