KATIMA MULILO - The Best farmers for 2017/2018 in the Zambezi were yesterday all rewarded with certificates, cash prizes and floating trophies by the Namibian Agronomic Board (NAB).
The communal dry-land awards were introduced by NAB in Zambezi Region in 2008 as a way to motivate communal farmers in the northeast region.
Lifasi Munsu from Kanono in the Sibbinda Constituency walked away with the grand prize of N$21,000 and a floating trophy for being the best Communal Dry-land Maize Farmer in the entire region. Other farmers who were recognised are Fabian Sisamu who walked away with a floating trophy for being the best Mahangu farmer in the region on more than 10 hectares and Robert Kamwayamunzi received the floating trophy for being the best Mahangu farmers on a small scale of 5 to 9 hectares.
Communal Dry-land conservation farmers were also recognised for their efforts and were all awarded certificates. In his remarks, Munsu stated that when he was a young boy he use to help his parents in farming and it is what motivated him to continue practicing farming.
“I would like to appeal to all retired officials who are just in town, to go home and till the land in order to meet government half-way in fighting hunger and poverty,” advised Munsu.
The Deputy Chairperson of NAB Dr Marina Muller was impressed with the food security in Zambezi where some farmers have in the past lamented the fact they have a limited market for their maize grain and for their livestock such as cattle.
She pointed out that 6000 tons of marketable maize from the 10,000 tons that was planted was harvested during the cropping season of 2017/2018 in Zambezi.“The Zambezi region should indeed become the grain basket of Namibia, if we all work smarter in relation to the best agricultural practices given the prevailing climatic condition,” said Muller. She further advised farmers in the region should with notable increased production, start thinking in an angle of producing for businesses and move away from subsistence farming, “so that we encourage potential investors into milling facilities in order for our grains to have access to markets.”