05 Aug 2015 11:30am
OSHAKATI, 05 AUG (NAMPA) Oshana regional governor Clemens Kashuupulwa has called on regional farmers unions to ensure increasing participation of farmers on issues that affect livestock and mahangu farming.
Kashuupulwa said this whilst addressing an agricultural stakeholder meeting convened by the Namibia National Farmers Union (NNFU) at Oshakati on Tuesday.
The governor said farmers unions are also not active enough to ensure enhanced marketing of farming products and add value to farming activities in the communal areas.
The government, Kashuupulwa said, is focusing on poverty eradication, economic growth, reducing income disparities, and wealth and job creation for the next five years.
For the realisation of these objectives, farmers unions have a major role to play to improve the agricultural yields in the region, the Oshana regional governor explained.
He added that farmers unions in the region must have in place programmes that can be subsidised by the central government through the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry (MAWF).
Kashuupulwa wants to be provided with the regional farmers unions plan of action on the improvement of farming activities in the region.
I am concerned that we may not be going anywhere, if it is only the MAWF and the national federation of farmers unions that are active in the agricultural sector to improve food security, agricultural yields, add value to agricultural products, marketing agricultural products, reduce poverty and increase economic growth, the governor stated.
Speaking at the same meeting, NNFU president Tobias Emvula said more than 70 per cent of rural population depend on agricultural production for a livelihood to feed families and send children to school.
Nevertheless, Emvula charged that a double blow of drought situation and outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) has this year seriously destabilised the normal functioning of the farmers economic household.
NNFU, as an organisation, has taken note of the serious negative impact of drought and FMD on the rural livelihood of our farmers across the country, he said.