via Govt mobilises $210m for livestock, wildlife support | The Herald February 13, 2016
Lloyd Gumbo Senior Reporter
Government is mobilising about $210 million for livestock and wildlife support, Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister Joseph Made has said.
He made the remarks in Parliament on Wednesday during a questions without notice session. Minister Made also urged farmers to destock, to avert losses caused by shortage of pastures and water. He was responding to questions from legislators on what mechanisms Government was putting in place to avert El Nino-related cattle deaths.
“On cattle, we have a support programme where we are going to spend about $139 million on the livestock programme,” said Minister Made.
“On the livestock destocking programme, we will chip in with $54 million, and on wildlife support we will assist with $15 million.”
Thousands of cattle have died throughout the country due to lack of grazing pastures and inadequate water.
In some parts of Manicaland and Masvingo, villagers are said to be selling their cattle for as little as $30. Minister Made said it was important for farmers in such areas to sell some of their cattle before their condition deteriorates.
“We envisage that farmers that are in the arid areas that do not have sufficient rainfall and pastures should destock before the livestock die of famine or lack of grazing,” said Minister Made.
“I am saying so because in some areas there has not been any rainfall, as a result we do not have grazing pastures.
“The key point is livestock farmers should destock and sell most of their cattle before they die,” said Minister Made.