Hwange horticulture project transforms lives

By Tichaona Kurewa

THE Second Republic’s Horticulture Recovery Plan is on track, with the government expressing satisfaction with projects being implemented in Hwange district.

The government is targeting to set up at least one horticulture project in every village across the country under the Horticulture Recovery Plan.

The ZBC News crew witnessed a thriving horticulture project in Monde Village near Victoria Falls, which is being spearheaded by the government’s partners with support from local communities.

“We have been to Monde Garden; we were impressed by what people are doing there. We have seen that 49 members are working on the garden, but the garden is 45 hectares in extent, but they are only utilising 10 percent which is 4,5 hectares,” said Stancilae Tapererwa from the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development.

“Their major limiting factor is water. They have requested the government to assist them once they get servitude to have water pumped from the Zambezi River to the scheme so that they utilise the entire 45 hectares. This is what we are going to work on. We are going to make a recommendation to the Minister that our Department of Irrigation should come and make sure that the water is pumped to irrigate the entire 45 hectares.”

The Izhane Tinde Community Garden Project is one of the flagship horticulture projects which have transformed lives in the district.

“The garden project is quite handy; we are growing vegetables which we are also selling for a living. This project is good for my community,” said Memory Sibanda, Agriculture Marketing Authority board member.

“We are thankful to the government for supporting us through the Agritex Department. People are now running successful horticultural projects in this area. We urge the government to assist us to draw water from the Zambezi River so that we increase the hectare in the project,” said Khumbulani Tshambo, the project coordinator.

Izhane Tinde Community Garden has a total of 45 hectares, but only five hectares are being utilised at the moment due to limited water supply.

The Horticulture Recovery Plan is part of the Agriculture and Food Systems Transformation Strategy meant to transform agriculture from a US$5,2 billion to a US$8,2 billion sector, contributing 20 percent of GDP by 2025 in line with the vision of an upper middle-income society by 2030.