Presidential Rural Development Programme launched in Manicaland

By Kenias Chivuzhe

THE Government is forging ahead with the implementation of the Presidential Rural Development programme with the Nyahukwe community in Makoni ward 20 being the first beneficiary in Manicaland province.

The programme was launched by President Mnangagwa in December last year to transform and empower rural communities.

The Nyahukwe community in Makoni ward 20 is elated at being the first in the province to benefit from the programme that is expected to see solar powered boreholes being drilled.

“The period we are approaching starting August was presenting insurmountable challenges to us due to lack of water. This would affect our livelihoods as a farming community.

“The shortage of water threatened food security in our area hence we are excited that our President lives to his promises.

“We will plant cash crops that include green pepper and peas. We were also facing challenges of irrigating our gardens carry water on our heads and we were left behind in development programmes like these and we are grateful that this will result in employment creation,” said the farming community.

Manicaland Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, honourable Nokuthula Matsikenyere, says over and above improving food security, the programme will further consolidate the position of Manicaland as a leading horticultural producer.

“This programme will strengthen and further consolidate the position of Manicaland as a top contributor in the country’s horticulture sub sector. The nutrition gardens and other project components of the presidential rural development programme will help in the widening of households’ income strings while bolstering food security,” said the minister.

Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development, Dr Anxious Masuka, who outlined the scope of the rural development programme gave assurance that the second republic signature programmes’ targets will be met by 2025.

“The boreholes will be drilled under three categories. They will be drilled in every village while others will be drilled at all schools. Two boreholes will be drilled for youths in every village.

“The President has approved the procurement of forty drilling rigs with 10 having been distributed while 30 more will be distributed before the heroes holiday,” said Dr Masuka.

The programme will see ZINWA providing water infrastructure with ARDA supported by the Agricultural Advisory and Rural Services directorate in providing economic support.

AFC commercial bank will provide seed financing for cash crops growing while the Agricultural Marketing Authority and the country’s National Trade Development and Promotion Organisation, ZIMTRADE, will provide marketing support.