By Kenias Chivuzhe
Drought-prone Buhera district will this season record a bumper harvest after at least 36 000 households adopted the Pfumvudza programme, while the setting up of irrigation schemes in the dry region is expected to further boost local food security.
This was revealed by the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement, Dr Anxious Masuka who toured Pfumvudza plots in Buhera and Makoni this Saturday as part of his nationwide crop assessment programme.
“Expectations are that we are going to have a bumper harvest in Buhera this season. We are now looking at preparedness of the GMB deports to receive the crop and the preparedness of the fiscus to pay farmers in time.
“We are happy that the district is being transformed from a food insecure area to a food sufficient area. We need to GMB to increase storage capacity following the success of the Pfumvudza programme,” he said.
With Zimbabwe being predicted to be dryer in the coming decades, drought prone Buhera district will benefit from the irrigation development programme that targets to effectively utilise ten thousand dams in the country.
“We climate proof our agriculture through conservation farming and we have called it Pfumvudza. At a broader national scale, we climate proof our agriculture through accelerated irrigation rehabilitation and development and we envisage that in the next three seasons 350 000 hectares will be irrigated.
“Marovanyati has capacity to irrigating 1250 hectares and we have begun works to ensure that come August a substantial area will be under irrigation.”
Local farmers, agriculture experts and the Buhera community spoke on the success of the Pfumvudza programme as they also look forward to benefit from the irrigation expansion programme.
“Pfumvudza has brought hope to us following the death of our cattle. land preparation was critical to the success. We started plant on 17 November and I am targeting to produce a tonne from a single maize Pfumvudza plot,” said a local farmer.
“We appeal for assistance to start an irrigation scheme in the Marume area under village head Gava to further increase productivity. The programme has been adopted the Pfumvunza and the hunger programme will be temporarily dealt with,” another said.
Meanwhile, Minister Masuka pledged government’s commitment to deal with cattle deaths due to tick borne diseases.