Youths benefit from the farming mechanisation programme 

By Kenias Chivuzhe

YOUTH empowerment programmes are gaining traction with thousands of youths in Manicaland’s Makoni district benefiting from the Empower Bank and AFC mechanisation support programme. 

Youths in Headlands under the banner Headlands small scale farmers association through support from Empower Bank and AFC mechanization leasing company have received farming equipment as part of the government’s empowerment drive and mechanization of the agriculture sector.

The beneficiaries expressed their appreciation for the assistance, with Headlands small scale farmers association chairperson Innocent 

Magutakuona reveals that apart from the equipment, an additional $3 million has been availed to ensure the farming project succeeds. 

“We are grateful for this important initiative that came through the Headlands small scale farmers association. I am appreciative of the government programmes that are empowering communities. We are looking forward to entering into Joint ventures as we upgrade our farming activities into businesses.

“We are so delighted with this scheme by our President for making the youth empowerment programmes a reality. We are being given loans as well as command agriculture inputs. The provision of tractors has capacitated us to effectively venture into agriculture as a business.

“The coming tractors and availing of money by the empower bank is helping us to scale up farming activities and embark on projects such as poultry among others. This is part of employment creation.

AFC leasing company general manager Shepherd Kondo says the support programme funded by the empower bank will be replicated across the country.

“The Headlands small scale farmers association have been funded by the empowerment bank and have approached us as AFC leasing company to assist them with mechanisation and our mandate is to provide mechanization services to all categories of farmers. 

“This is a start of a long journey where we will be assisting all categories of farmers throughout Zimbabwe with mechanization services from ploughing, land preparation, planting, crop care as well as harvesting. 

“Associations like these make it easier for us to mechanise and assist them. What this association has done should be emulated by other farmers associations and youths to achieve the targets and the vision the country has set for its self.”

Manicaland Zanu PF Women’s league chairperson Happiness Nyakuedzwa who represented minister Monica Mutsvangwa at the launch says such agricultural empowerment schemes are an important step towards the attainment of vision 2030 of an upper-middle-income society.

Meanwhile, minister Mutsvangwa commended the youths in Manicaland for taking heed to calls to form consortiums to boost their operations.  

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