More Zambezi land availed for green schemes

Katima Mulilo: A combined 20 000 hectares of land are earmarked for green schemes in the Zambezi Region. The vast area of arable land was sourced from different communal areas, such as Muyako, Kongola, Singalamwe, Liselo and Muzungu.

This was revealed by Zambezi Regional Governor Lawrence Sampofu during his presentation on developmental projects in the region last week.

“The Governor’s Office negotiated for land that could be used for green schemes. Currently there are 20 000 hectares at our disposal for such green schemes. At Muyako we have 1 000 hectares, Kongola 1 000, Singalamwe, 5 000, Muzungu 2 000 and at Liselo 12 000,” said Sampofu. Of the combined tally only 10 000 hectares have been allocated to an investor in the form of a tobacco farm by Oriental Tobacco CC at Liselo, on the outskirts of Katima Mulilo.

Although the project has received widespread condemnation, it is said to be in an advanced stage of implementation. Sampofu noted that the region was looking at ways of attracting investors to maximise production.

“My office will strive to lure investors to the region, who will invest in agricultural production to enhance food security, economic growth, wealth and job creation for the region and the nation at large”, said Sampofu.

Other notable green scheme projects in the region include the Kalimbeza Rice Project in northeastern Zambezi, close to the banks of the Zambezi River. Declared a national project by former president Hifikepunye Pohamba in 2009, the area – which measures close to 50 hectares – is already under production in a vast field covering 200 hectares in total. Varieties of packaged rice are also available for sale from Kalimbeza, although not yet on commercial scale.

Construction of a shed for implements, as well as a chemical and fertiliser storeroom and the paving of the road is currently underway at the project, at a combined cost of N$15 million, according to information provided by Sampofu during his presentation.

The water reticulation project, aimed at providing potable water to residents of the region is also ongoing, after the completion of the first two phases. Phase 3, which is currently underway, involves the drilling of boreholes and laying of pipes from Bukalo to Ngoma and from Kongola to Kapani.