Resettlement Farmers’ Day held at Otjiwarongo

OTJIWARONGO; Over 100 farmers resettled on government farming units in the Otjozondjupa Region on Saturday held a gathering at the Paresis Sports Stadium in Otjiwarongo to celebrate their achievements.

The Otjozondjupa Regional Deputy Director in the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement, Ndiyakupi Nghituwamata told Nampa in an interview on Monday there are 104 government resettlement farming units in the region.

Her ministry organised the Resettlement Farmers’ Day to allow farmers on the farming units to come together and exhibit their best products.

“We did this so that those who are not doing well can learn from others,” Nghituwamata said.

Presentations on topics such as overstocking and overgrazing were presented to the farmers by agricultural extension officers from the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry.

Veterinarians from the Directorate of Veterinary Services in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry also talked to the farmers about the advantages of livestock ear-tagging.

Game rangers from the Ministry of Environment and Tourism also presented to them on some common predators in the region.

The Agricultural Bank of Namibia (Agribank)’s area manager for Otjiwarongo, Wylie Upi explained to the farmers that they can apply for loans from the bank which can help them develop their farming.

“Our farmers were most pleased with the topic of inheritance of these farms because we told them these government farming units can be inherited by their descendants,” Nghituwamata noted.

She indicated that there is a common perception that farmers resettled on government farms do not do much to help themselves.

She said they do experience challenges such as insufficient water for animals, old fences and housing structures, but some farmers have worked on improving their situation themselves.

Nghituwamata said her ministry on Saturday also awarded cash prizes and floating trophies to the best performing farmers resettled on the government farms.

She said the prizes were given in order to motivate them to produce small and large livestock, as well as fruits and vegetables of good quality, she said.

Johannes Damaseb, resettled on Farm Okorusu No. 88, Unit A in Otjiwarongo Constituency was voted the Best Large Livestock Farmer for 2014 by the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement on Saturday.

He received a cash prize of N.dollars 5 000 and a floating trophy.

Lucky Richter, farming on Farm Buschveld No. 256, Unit C in Otjiwarongo Constituency also received N.dollars 3 000 in the category of Best Small Livestock Farmer.

A prominent crop and vegetable producer in the Grootfontein Constituency, Kavetjiua Tjituka, farming at Farm Omhul No. 748, Unit B received a cash price of N.dollars 2 000 as the Best Vegetable Farmer.

The Otjozondjupa resettlement farmers’ day was sponsored by Agribank, the Namibian Agronomic Board and Coca-Cola Namibia.

This Otjozondjupa Resettlement Famers’ Day is expected to become an annual event, Nghituwamata said.

The Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement, Esther Lusepani also attended the event.