Pay farmers their dues: President

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Companies that offer agricultural support to farmers should play their part in the industrialisation of rural areas through rewarding crop producers fairly, President Mnangagwa has said.

He said after some companies have been accused of giving farmers a raw deal, the Zanu PF leadership in areas where cash crops such as cotton are produced, should take deliberate measures to develop industrial systems to ensure that people derive benefits from their produce.

This comes as the Second Republic is taking measures to ensure that rural areas are not left behind in terms of development and has been providing agriculture support in the form of inputs and mechanisation, interventions that have ensured a bumper harvest for the country this year.

However, some unscrupulous companies have been holding farmers to ransom through low and also late payments.

Addressing hundreds of people who thronged Chief Njelele’s homestead in Gokwe South, during commemorations of the Cultural Week on Friday, President Mnangagwa said devolution, which sets GDP targets for all provinces, was taking shape with tangible results.

“The 2020/2021 agriculture season has seen the nation attaining a bumper harvest. I applaud farmers for their continued resolve towards increased agriculture production. I urge companies that provide agricultural support to farmers, to ensure that the farmers are fairly rewarded. 

“It is also encouraging that the devolution and decentralisation agenda is also taking root in all our provinces,” he said.

President Mnangagwa said Zanu PF provincial and district structures should also step to the plate and lead the development of their respective communities towards the attainment of Vision 2030 to make Zimbabwe an upper middle class economy by that year.

“I challenge the provincial and district leaderships in cotton growing areas such as Gokwe South and Gokwe North to make deliberate decisions for the establishment of rural industry systems with regard to cotton and textiles.

“I exhort the various private sector players in the cotton to textile and clothing value chain to consider establishing ginneries, spinning and weaving plants as we industrialise our rural areas. 

“The culture of hard work should therefore continue to anchor increased agricultural productivity.”

The Second Republic has introduced climate-proofed agriculture through programmes such as Pfumvudza and the farm mechanisation and irrigation facilities that are offered to commercial farmers.

“The Presidential Input Support Scheme, Pfumvudza/Intwasa Programme and Presidential Rural Horticulture and Poultry Programme will continue to offer support to farmers,” said President Mnangagwa.

The support from Government will see each rural household receiving poultry, while households that are into horticulture will get a variety of plants to establish orchards.

This is on top of fisheries that the Government has been promoting in areas where there are dams or weirs to enhance food and nutrition security. herald

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