Kae MaÞun9ÿu-Tjiparuro Windhoek-The Okakarara Farmers Association (OFA) is winding down the year this Friday in Okakarara with a farmers’ day graced by the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry (MAWF)’s permanent secretary, Percy Misika. Misika would be explaining a new agricultural project, which his ministry has introduced. Other experts in the sector are also expected at this event. Barely six month at the helm now, OFA executive committee is hell bent on diversifying the farming activities of the farming communities in the Ozonahi communal area. Given the increasing constant pressure on livestock, due to droughts because of climatic changes, coupled with diseases, also related to change in climate, there is no way forward than diversifying from animal husbandry into crop production. Secretary general of AFA Jackson Hindjou Tjituka says besides providing food security crop production can also boost animal husbandry by proving farmers with the necessary fodder for their animals. He says AFA has been without a firm leadership for a number of years and a result there have been no programmes in place to help farmers with the leadership that has been there concentrating only on the marketing of the animals. In this regard he thinks the new leadership have inherited a good foundation they can build on as the association is on a good financial grounding. Other aspects that they plan addressing is debushing to allow grazing to resuscitate as well as adding value to traditional products such as milk, in this case looking at the production of chees as well traditional fat, known as omaze. This is in line with the government’s Growth at Home strategy encouraging home processing rather than the export of raw materials. Hindjou Tjituka adds that another of their focus is to mainstream the youth and women into farming in view of the fact that most of the current farmers are reaching retirement and thus it is only visionary to have someone following in their footsteps. Hence, one of their main occupation is to generally educate, make aware and to expose the public to farming. Hitherto they have had three farmers day, which he thinks was a success with an average attendance of 80 people. They hit the ground running having already ploughed back within their community by donating photocopy paper to schools in the town of Okakarara for the year-end examinations. The new leadership comprises: Jackson Kazetjikuria (chairperson), Elia Kandjii (vice chairperson), Jackson Hindjou Tjituka (secretary general), Isabella Muikute, Benestus Katjizeu (treasurer), Nico Ngaujake (vice treasurer), Hitjevi Tjihuiko (PRO and advisor), Mbenaije Kazenaimue (organiser) and Ngutjaana Katjiukua (deputy organiser).
2017-11-28 09:35:59 9 months ago