WINDHOEK - As part of its numerous commitments in its election manifesto Swapo Party has promised to develop local capacity to produce agricultural production inputs such as seeds, fertilizers and herbicides.
This commitment in terms of agriculture and food security is contained in the party’s 89-page election manifesto that was launched recently.
Namibia is experiencing a severe drought due to lack of rainfall over the past few years, which has resulted in massive crop and livestock losses.
According to Swapo, food security and self-sufficiency are critical aspects of national economic growth and development.
The party also noted that factors such as climate change and global warming have direct and negative impacts on food production.
“It is for this reason that measures to achieve food security are incorporated in key national documents such as NDP5, Vision 2030 and the strategic plans of relevant government institutions. Namibia also subscribes to and supports AU resolutions on the development of agriculture in general and food security in particular,” President Hage Geingob has said.
Therefore, at the national level, Swapo vowed to safeguard Namibia’s ability to regulate in favour of producing its own food at all times.
Swapo has promised to continue expanding the capacity of the national strategic food reserve facilities to compensate for cereal shortages for the past six months.
Moreover, the party pledged to place more land under agricultural production and reposition green scheme projects to contribute more to food security in the country.
The party also said it will review and strengthen financing schemes at Agribank to ensure they are affordable, accessible and responsive to the needs of small-scale farmers.
In addition, Swapo promised to expand and strengthen the provision of agricultural extension and professional support services to commercial and subsistence farmers to increase productivity in both the crop and livestock sub-sectors.
The party furthermore vowed to encourage investments in commercial and communal fruit and vegetable production to boost food security and nutrition at national and household levels.
Swapo said it would also encourage the financial services sector to fund the development of infrastructure for agricultural production, storage, processing and marketing to achieve food security and increase export earnings.
Incentivising local farmers to adopt sustainable farming methods such as hydroponics, aquaculture and conservation agriculture is another promise of the ruling party.
Swapo also committed to establishing more feedlots and fodder production schemes to cater for the local market, while accelerating the operationalisation of abattoirs and meat processing facilities in the communal areas and develop a master plan for value addition to locally produced meat.
2019-10-17 06:52:47 | 25 days ago