Irrigation Schemes to Pave Way For Rural Development
MIDLANDS – Development and industrialisation of rural communities are hinged on the transformational thrust of the Vision 2030 of commercialising farming activities and using more than 450 irrigation schemes across the country, Agriculture, Lands, Water, Fisheries and Rural Development Minister Dr Anxious Masuka has said.
Commissioning an Exchange Irrigation Scheme at Silobela in Midlands Province, Minister Masuka said the robust agriculture growth under the President’s Agriculture 8.0 model would pave way for rural development.
“President Emmerson Mnangagwa is prioritising rural development and industrialisation through different Presidential agriculture programs like the goat, fish and pfumvudza program which aims at ensuring that the nation is grain secure.
“Presidential Irrigation schemes aim to facilitate the transformation of agriculture from peasant farming to commercial farming which will be rolled out through ARDA.
“ARDA will deploy Scheme Business Managers to enhance productivity and every farming activity will be modelled under the agri-business terms,” he said.
Minister Masuka said the Agriculture 8.0 Model is region-centred and development will commence in respective communities.
The Exchange Irrigation scheme has a total of 982 households farming 146 hectares of maize crop and nationally two million rural-based farmers are set to benefit from a total of 450 irrigation schemes.
Exchange Irrigation Scheme chairperson Ms Elizabeth Mushonga commended the government for the strides they have made in the agricultural sector.
“I am really happy as an empowered woman. The government has answered our calls by supporting us with inputs, knowledge and resources as we conduct our farming business.
“We are celebrating a bumper harvest here at Exchange Irrigation Scheme, our families are food secure.
“Above all, from the proceeds, we will be able to buy our own properties and prepare for the next farming season,” she said.
ARDA is assisting the scheme with tractors and seeds for the winter farming season.