Wad Targets 2 000 Jobs With Vegetable Seed Project

WOMEN’S Action for Development (WAD) plans to create more than 2 000 jobs after joining hands with international partners to run a vegetable seed garden.

The Pupkewitz Group is the local partner responsible for infrastructure development, capital equipment and management solutions for the multimillion dollar project at Aussenkehr in the Karas region.

WAD will mobilise and manage women cooperatives that will be directly involved with the production of the hybrid seeds.

Veronica de Klerk, WAD executive director, made the announcement during the organisation’s 20th anniversary commemoration gala dinner in Windhoek on Friday, saying the project will train women to grow and export vegetable seeds for various international markets.

“This is the first project of its kind in Africa,” she said, adding that a technical management service (TMS) from Israel and a world-renowned seed export company, Nunhems from the Netherlands, are assisting to set up the project.

According to information on WAD’s website, an agreement was signed in January 2012 for the project. She further said the technical management service that brought this initiative to Namibia will provide hybrid seeds for tomatoes, melons, water melons and cucumbers.

President Hifikepunye Pohamba, who was the keynote speaker at the dinner, said when successfully implemented, the project will help reduce the country’s high dependency on importation of fruits, vegetables, and other basic consumer items.

Pohamba commended WAD for teaming up with international partners in the venture in response to government’s call for programmes that can assist Namibians, especially women and the youth.

The initial full production phase will be implemented on 24 hectares with the potential of expanding to 150 hectares of land.

Initially, the project is expected to last 15 years, with prospects of renewal and continuity thereafter.

Source : The Namibian