Government to continue engaging Chilonga Community on forage crop project

By Zbc Reporter
The government says it will continue engaging Chilonga community for the setting up of a forage crop project expected to boost livestock production in the area and earn the country foreign currency.
Addressing the Chilonga community in Chiredzi on progress made in reviving the local irrigation scheme and the idea of setting up a lucerne grass project for livestock feed, the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement retired Air Chief Marshal Perrance Shiri said locals will benefit more from the projects.
“Pachaitwa chirongwa ichi havazokanganwi vagari venzvimbo ino huye kuchauya vanhu togara pasi nemadzishe neutungamiriri poonekwa kuti tofambisa sei tichitaurirana semhuri imwe inoda budiriro munzvimbo. (When the programme will be undertaken, they must not forget the locals. As the leadership will sit down and assess the development projects required in the area and see how we can implement the projects in unison),” said retired Air Chief Marshal Perrence Shiri.
Masvingo Minister of State for Masvingo Province, Cde Ezra Chadzamira said the province remains committed to ensuring the success of all government-initiated projects that benefit society.
“Zvirongwa zvese zvebudiriro zvekuvandudza upenyu hwevanhu tinozvitambira isu sevanhu vemasvingo zvirongwa zvisingakanganisi magariro evanhu,(We value and appreciate these development projects are meant to uplift the livelihoods of the people of Chiredzi), Ezra Chadzamira
Local Government and Public Works Minister, Honourable July Moyo said the community must play its part in the revival of chilonga irrigation scheme.
“Zvatakukusiyai mosara moronga imi semadzishe necouncil nevanhu kuti jecha rose mumacanals rabuda, pakatsemuka zvose ministry yati ichakubatsirai (After we leave, as the local community should plan how you will de-silt the water canals, The Ministry will also assist you rehabilitate the canals)”, said Honourable July Moyo.
Area legislator Honourable Denford Masiya weighed in saying the revival of the irrigation scheme will uplift livelihoods in Chiredzi East and South.
“Tinoda kukutendai nedanho ramatora irrigation iyi yanga yakamira makore ese aya huye tinovimba upenyu hwedu huchavandudzika (We want to thank you for this initiative, this irrigation scheme had stalled for years but it’s revival will uplift the livelihoods in Chiredzi)”, said honourable Denford Masiya.
Government is prioritising revival of Chilonga irrigation scheme which has been lying idle for more than 10 years, including the setting up of a lucerne grass project expected to earn the country more than 50 million United States dollars per annum. The revival of the irrigation scheme will benefit many farmers in the area and has the potential to feed 5 000 people. The Chilonga Irrigation Scheme in Chilonga Communal Lands under Chief Sengwe in Chiredzi South. Only two of the three procured pumps were installed since the structure could not hold more pumps. The pumps could not be tested as yet due to the low levels of water in the Runde River, which feeds the irrigation scheme and will benefit many farmers in the area.
Chilonga irrigation Scheme was formed in 1964 and it used to feed 5 000 people until it broke down in 2007 and has been lying in disrepair ever since. The irrigation scheme will help farmers fight the effects of drought by increasing food production.

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