The KwaZulu-Natal department of agriculture and rural development, led by agriculture MEC Super Zuma, has made a concerted effort to focus on the growth of farmers, particularly in far-flung areas. The department is committed to ensuring food security and sustainability, as well as promoting job creation in the sector.
Zuma has presented a multifaceted agricultural development plan aimed at growing the economy of the province.
As part of the MEC’s plan, the department introduced a livestock programme devised for genetic improvement. Beef bulls were handed over to the Msunduzi Livestock Association.
According to the department, they provided farmers with machinery including tractors which will be used at the Willowfountain grazing camp. Several households received seedlings, garden tools, and extension services under the One Home One Garden programme.
Zuma said the province is facing high levels of poverty and unemployment as well as undesirable consequences of past oppression.
“We are here in Msunduzi to end all this through agriculture and we are building a legacy for our children,” Zuma said.
Stock theft remains a major issue
Zuma, however, raised concern over stock theft in the province citing that it was actually taking the province and the the development of farmers backwards.
He said the government was working towards having a special identification mark for each district which would make recovery easier for farmers.
Msunduzi Livestock Association chairperson Simphiwe Miya expressed gratefulness to the department, saying local farmers were faced with constant challenges as their livestock is often sold at a loss. However, now that the department had provided bulls for genetic improvement, farmers were guaranteed a profit.
“The department of agriculture has proven that they care about us. We extend our gratitude to MEC Zuma,” Miya said.
Umgungundlovu district mayor Muziwokuthula Zuma praised the department for its dedication to the district development programme which had brought change to countless KwaZulu-Natal families.
He urged Imbali residents to work hand in hand with the department. He added that the community and their needs are a priority as he had returned with interventions 10 days after the first meeting with farmers and the community.
All spheres of govt must work together
Msunduzi municipality mayor Mzi Thebolla said it was a special day for the residents of Imbali as they received much-needed services from the department.
“If we want our lives to change, it is important that we work together. It is our collective responsibility to end poverty and work towards food security and this we can achieve. We are a responsible government and we are grateful for the department’s dedication and hard work,” Thebolla said.
According to the department, two dip tanks, Khoti and KwaNube, were under construction. A new service provider has been appointed for the Empushini dip tank and another for the Zayeka cattle crush pen.
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