Farmers Should Register After Ploughing – Official

| January 27, 2015

The chief technical assistant at the Department of Crop Production in Nkange, Mr Rabson Mahabile has said it is important that farmers register after they have ploughed because it helps the government in many aspects.

In an interview recently, Mr Mahabile said it was important for them to keep records of people who plough as it helps them to make follow ups on those individuals and that the records guide them to help farmers in addressing technical issues such as pests, weeds and provision of good seeds.

He highlighted that during harvesting they go back to the registered farmers to count the number of bags of sorghum, maize, millet and cowpeas and use that information to determine the state of food security in the country. He stated that without registration there was no way that they would be able to know whether there was enough food in the country.

Furthermore, he said they encourage Batswana to take aantage of the Integrated Support Programme for Arable Agriculture Development (ISPAAD)which provides farmers with fertilizers, hybrid seeds. He explained that they also pay people who plough in rows irrespective of whether the farmer used a tractor or animal draught power.

Mr Mahabile stated that in previous years they have been registering all farmers regardless of the method used when ploughing, but that this year they only register farmers who plough and plant in rows. Last year, he said they registered over 1 000 farmers. He explained that so far they have registered 94 farmers from Nkange and Senete and that they have not started registering farmers from Changate.

He said they were faced with a situation whereby tractor owners overcharge farmers and want to be paid before they could start ploughing. He said the government only pays farmers P800 after ploughing.

He admitted that sometimes they fail to monitor the registered farms due to shortage of transport and that his department was under staffed.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Business & Finance

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