Dumisani Nsingo, Senior Reporter
THE Government has started registering farmers under the Special Livestock, Fisheries and Wildlife Programme.
Agriculture, Lands and Rural Resettlement Deputy Minister Davis Marapira confirmed that registering of farmers who intend to benefit under the Special Livestock, Fisheries and Wildlife Programme commonly known as Command Livestock had started.
“I can confirm that the registration of farmers under Command Livestock has started at district, provincial and at the Command Centre,” said Dep Minister Marapira.
He could not be drawn into divulging more information on the programme. Matabeleland North Provincial Agricultural Technical and Extension Services (Agritex) officer Mr Dumisani Nyoni who is also the Command Agriculture Provincial Co-ordinator said registering of farmers started last week in all the country’s provinces targeting those intending to participate in broiler and cattle schemes.
“We have started registering farmers under Command Livestock from all our Agritex district offices and the exercise is happening in all the country’s districts and we started with broilers and cattle. The registration process is overwhelming but what we are looking at is that farmers have to meet the criteria in terms of the guidelines set under the programme,” said Mr Nyoni.
He said a vetting process would be conducted to determine those to benefit under the programme.
“As for the ones registering for broilers they have to be able to prove that they own a fowl run with a capacity to hold 500 to 5 000 chickens and have all the required resources such as water, storeroom and exhibit that there is security as this will ensure the sustainability of the project,” said Mr Nyoni.
He said those intending to benefit under the cattle scheme should also be able to prove that they have the requisite infrastructure.
“Those that register for cattle also have to show that they have the requisite infrastructure such as branding apparatus, fully fledged pens, storeroom for the storing of stock feed in times of need as well as having the feeding bays, dipping facilities, loading and offloading ramps, adequate grazing land as well as access to water which is a very critical input in cattle ranching,” said Mr Nyoni.
The programme, which is part of the trajectory of Government’s broad economic recovery and transformation concept, Zim Asset and also meant to ensure the country achieves food security, nutrition and empower people was launched by Vice-President Retired General Dr Constantino Chiwenga in Gwatemba area of Insiza District in Matabeleland South in February.