MEDIA RELEASE

Date: 22 September 2020
MIGDOL-MEC Desbo Mohono has been moved by local farmers’ act of kindness and generosity towards fellow farmers in the province. This comes after a Mamusa Agricultural Forum donateda goats, sheep, pigs, heifers and a bull to other emerging farmers from and around the Mamusa Local Municipality so they can grow their farming projects.
The forum is made up of emerging farmers and was established in 2017 with the aim of protecting and advancing the interests of local farmers, promoting the development of a viable farming industry in order to improve rural community’s standard of living and enhancing rural farming.
Speaking during the handing over of donations to beneficiaries last Tuesday, 22 September 2020 MEC Desbo Mohono said she was personally touched by the generosity of these farmers.
“I’m completely humbled and touched by this gesture. I therefore wish to thank the forum for the initiative that they have come up with and for sharing with others what they have so they can and empower themselves and go further. Not everybody gives out, but for the mere fact that they have extended a hand to help others it’s a good thing. We are so grateful as the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and we would like to encourage other farmers to do the same. We are overwhelmed by the compassion and generosity of our farmers,” elated Mohono expressed.
To beneficiaries, MEC Mohono said they must go and multiply what they have received. “If you take care of them they will take care of you,” Mohono concluded.
The forum itself identified beneficiaries whom majority were young people from the Mamusa region who are actively involved in farming and other agricultural activities.
Speaking on behalf of the forum and donors, the Deputy Chairperson Mr Kabelo Digopo said donation of these animals is part of the forum’s vision and mission of developing others. “Our vision is to see many young people taking part in the agricultural sector and the donation of these few animals is our contribution towards that vision,” Digopo highlighted.
Ofentse Seane, a young female and aspiring farmer from Ipelegeng was one of the beneficiaries. Seane thanked the Mamusa Agricultural Forum for their kind gesture. “On behalf of all beneficiaries, I wish to convey our genuine appreciation and heart-felt thanks to the forum for everything they have done for us.
“We thank them for reaching out to us as aspiring and emerging farmers and we want to assure them that we will not disappoint them. Maybe without the help from these fellow farmers our passion for farming would have died long time ago,” young Ofentse Seane went on to say.
The generosity and acts of kindness by the farmers towards fellow farmers in the province is not a new phenomenon.
Not so long ago, the Department welcomed a donation from a group of stud breeders in the North West Province who donated ten (10) Boran bulls to emerging farmers to help them improve the quality of their herds. In the Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Municipality, the passion for farming also motivated six stud breeders to donate bulls to a number emerging cattle farmers. The breeders handed over five bonsmara bulls and one Bramvee to the beneficiaries.
As MEC Desbo Mohono puts it, “the spirit of working together that we are seeing amongst our farmers will help us to grow and make the agricultural sector a more economical one thus leading to a general upliftment of the farmers and the broader communities.”
###End###
Issued by:
Communication Services Directorate
Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako
Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020
Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za
Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard
Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard
Twitter: @nwpg _dard

POVERTY REDUCTION ADVANCES

Potchefstroom –In order to advance government efforts to reduce poverty and hunger, the North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (NWDARD) handed over 30 culled cattle to the North West Department of Social Development (NWDSD) for them to donate meat to the needy communities in the province. MEC for NWDARD, Desbo Mohono handed over the cattle to her delighted counterpart of the Department of Social Development, MEC Boitumelo Moilwa at Potchefstroom Agricultural College on Thursday, 10 September 2020.

The cattle, which formed part of the NWDARD’s livestock research and development programme and are mainly of Nguni and Afrikaner breed, will be slaughtered for final exploration before being handed over to NWDSD. The NWDSD has identified centres such as orphanages, old age homes and homes hosting people with disabilities as well as those who care for vulnerable groups as beneficiaries of this good act.

The meat will be handed over within a week, immediately after final data collection by the NWDARD in order to avoid risks associated with contamination.

MEC Mohono said the departmental food security programme is proud to have advanced efforts by now donating meat to communities. “We have undertaken some robust efforts in ensuring our people do not go to bed without food. We did this, through our food security programme. I have led a departmental team to go communities to plant vegetable gardens and fruit trees, gave chicken eggs, indigenous chickens, goats and many other inputs. This time we are delighted as the department to donate meat. It says to us we are advancing in our quest to ensure that we alleviate hunger,” MEC Mohono quipped.

She said the departmental research unit has confirmed the cattle to be fit and will also verify after slaughtering that the meat is indeed fit for consumption. The department realises its mandate of right to food and freedom charter clause which advocates for food to be plentiful for all, it also seeks to enhance nutrition and quality of its life to the most vulnerable communities; and endorse independence. As the impacts of Covid 19 take its toll on many people, MEC Mohono said it was imperative for government to strengthen its efforts to empower communities. “The demand for food has gone higher now and it is a challenge because we have seen that many people have lost jobs. Agriculture now needs to be productive by bringing new and efficient methods to ensure that people have food”, she emphasised.

Research is one critical component as it supports the department’s contribution to the development of animal agriculture. This includes the exploration of improving livestock production systems, management practices, animal health and welfare as well as food quality and safety amongst other. Research can provide dramatic demonstrations of what is achievable and thereby encourage development. The farming communities may be reluctant to make investment in the livestock when there is probability of loses through deaths or other factors. It is through research that vaccines or genetically resistant breeds can encourage farmers to invest in improved nutrition, management and other livestock interventions.

Captions:
IMG-20200913-WA0011: MEC Desbo Mohono, MEC Boitumelo Moilwa as well as Acting Head of Department of Agriculture and Rural Development during the handover ceremony of the livestock.
IMG-20200913-WA0003: 30 Cattle have been donated to the North West Department of Social Development in order to contribute to the social relief programme.
ENDS.

Issued by
Communication Services Directorate
Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako
Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020
Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za
Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard
Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard
Twitter: @nwpg _dard

FOOD SECURITY PROGRAMME REACHES DITSOBOTLA LOCAL MUNICIPALITY RESIDENTS

MEDIA RELEASE Date: 23, August 2020

FOOD SECURITY PROGRAMME REACHES DITSOBOTLA LOCAL MUNICIPALITY RESIDENTS COLLIGNY​-​The North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has managed to help number of households, projects and non-profit making organizations in Ditsobotla Local Municipality last week to establish vegetable gardens through the distribution of starter pack consisting of vegetable seedlings and advice on production practices such as planting, tending and harvesting of vegetables.
Also as part of department’s Covid-19 response, during the campaign in Bissiesvlei and Coligny the department provided personal protective equipment (PPEs) to identified families to practice safe working environment and safe production. Families also received indigenous chickens with feed and fresh eggs.
According to MEC Desbo Mohono, every household needs to have a food garden as it will contribute towards the family’s food security.
“Through our food security programme, we are able to help households to have access to affordable, nutritious and diverse food. We are shifting the focus from food relief to food security by encouraging communities and households to plant food gardens of their own.
“The main objective of this programme is to assist households to be able to produce enough food to meet basic household food security needs. Income can be earned also from these gardens through the selling of surplus produce,” MEC Mohono pointed out.
Community members and project owners were elated to receive seedlings for their gardens and other agricultural inputs they received from government.
One of them is Nombulelo Mayeki of Itekeng Balemirui Project which is based in Bissiesvlei near Delareyville. This project has four full time employees. They plant vegetables and sell to the local community.
Mayeki thanked the department for the seedlings and for the personal protective equipment (PPEs) they were provided with to keep safe during this uncertain period of Covi-19.
We Belong ​ We Care ​ We Serve

  “I am extremely happy for everything that we have received today. We promise to continue working the land and producing nutritious food for our community,” Mayeki expressed.
In Coligny, the department helped to plant different vegetables seedlings in Tlhabologang Township and at Thuto Tshwaraganelo Project. This project with a great potential to grow further has ten (10) members. It was established back in 2014 when the two retired teachers established a non-profitmaking organization to improve the livelihoods of the entire Tlhabologang and Coligny residents.
The organization plant and sell their produce locally for income and for job creation. The organization is also passionate about education, community upliftment and helping needy families in and around Coligny. On top of the vegetable seedlings the organization received, members also received PPEs as well as fresh eggs.
In just a period of two days, over forty (40) vegetable gardens were established in Bissiesvlei and Coligny. Each project will be allocated an extension officer to offer continuous extension and advisory services to ensure growth and sustainability. This is a continuing programme and the department intends reaching out to all deserving households and individuals with interest in agricultural activities.
For advisory services or assistance with food security related services, members of the public are advised to visit any Local Area Offices (Laos) .

Issued by: Communication Services Directorate Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako Tel: ​018 389 5684​/ ​Cell: ​060 745 4020 Email: ​ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard Twitter: @nwpg _dard

ERADICATING POVERTY THROUGH AGRICULTURAL PROJECTS

MEDIA STATEMENT
Date: Monday, 11 August 2020
ERADICATING POVERTY THROUGH AGRICULTURAL PROJECTS
Mahikeng-In a quest to create sustainable job opportunities and increased access to sufficient and nutritious food, particularly among the rural communities, last Friday, 07 August 2020, MEC Desbo Mohono of North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development handed over to the beneficiaries in the rural district municipality of Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati, two agricultural projects.
The two (2) projects were Tshepanang Poultry Trust Project and Thota ya Tau Fish Harvest Primary Co-operative.
Tshepanang Poultry Trust Project is a Vryburg based establishment specialising with chickens for production of meat and eggs for food. The company was established in 2006 and currently has fourteen (14) active members.
It was initiated by members of the community in an effort to enhance and improve productivity of various agricultural commodities. The department in turn through its farmer support programme, provided infrastructure funding and capacity building programmes for the beneficiaries.
The project was funded during the 2019/2020 financial year with an amount of over six hundred thousand (R600, 000.00) to build a fully fleshed 5000 broiler unit and water storage. Through government aid, the project is now producing 3000 -5000 chickens per cycle and selling their produce to the community and local businesses.
The second project handed over on the day was Thota ya Tau Fish Harvest Primary Co-operative. This is a Taung based aquaculture establishment. The project started in 2015 and currently has ten (10) members.
It was funded with over a million rand through Comprehensive Agricultural Support Programme (CASP) during the 2018/19 financial year to continue harvesting fish and selling it to the local markets. Through the funding, the department constructed 2ha security fence for the project, built ablution facilities with septic tank, purchased a vehicle for the project, and constructed an office as well as tanks for water storage.

When handing over these projects, MEC Desbo Mohono said her department has a constitutional responsibility to use public funds to respond to the needs of the people by supporting them, especially rural communities and co-operatives, to produce their own income through agriculture.
“Handing over of these projects will also add to existing opportunities in the sector and will also ensure that the beneficiaries are financially independent and self-sustained. “I have high expectations that the beneficiaries will continue to maintain these projects at high standards and that the yield of quality agricultural products will grow steadily thus improving their livelihood and that of the communities.
“There will be challenges here and there but it is important that people continues to work hard to produce food and to sell to the markets. Those who can’t produce will buy from producers so that our province can grow,” expressed MEC Desbo Mohono
Kelesitse Beauty Baatege of Tshepanang Poultry Trust and Tebogo Matlonoko of Thota ya Tau Fish Harvest Primary Co-operative thanked MEC Mohono and the entire Department of Agriculture and Rural Development’ team for ensuring that the project get completed.
The handing over of these projects is part of the support that the department is giving to farmers to enable them to farm optimally and sustainably which will translate into the improvement of the livelihoods of the farmers and surrounding communities.
The department has been engaged with the rolling-out of infrastructural development, the purchasing of implements and machinery, production inputs, and farmer support for smallholder farmers across the province.

PHOTO CAPTIONS
IMG 7706:-Tshepanang Poultry Trust broiler unit that was built through government funding. The project is producing 3000 -5000 chickens per cycle and selling their produce to the community and local businesses.
IMG 7767:- MEC Desbo Mohono with beneficiaries of Thota ya Tau Fish Harvest Primary Cooperative. This aquaculture project was supported through the Comprehensive Agricultural Support Programme (CASP).

Issued by: Communication Services Directorate Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020 Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard Twitter: @nwpg _dard

North West prioritizes Food Security

MEDIA STATEMENT 

Date: Sunday, 03 August 2020

North West prioritizes Food Security

The COVID-19 pandemic is a health and human crisis threatening the food security and nutrition of millions of people around the world. Hundreds of millions of people were already suffering from hunger and malnutrition before the virus hit and, unless immediate action is taken, we could see a global food emergency. According to the general household survey of 2017 the North West Province has 1, 7 million people food insecure.

 

In the longer term, the combined effects of COVID-19 itself, as well as corresponding mitigation measures and the emerging global recession could, without large-scale coordinated action, disrupt the functioning of food systems. Such disruption can result in consequences for health and nutrition of a severity and scale unseen for more than half a century.

 

The pandemic hits us at a time of immense global challenges. There is a need to tackle all the food security and nutrition dimensions of this crisis. Addressing the COVID crisis requires all of us to work together across sectors and borders both to mitigate the immediate impacts and to reshape food systems so they support healthy diets for all and do more to make food production and consumption aligned to sustainable development.

 

Over the years Mandela day as an initiative has been used to alleviate food security. There has been more urgent need for solidarity and concerted efforts to take action against poverty while the country and world battles with a range of injustices. It is on this basis that the department intensified its message of fighting the food insecurity during the July month and the stats below highlight the food security intervention of the week ending 31 July 2020.

 

To deal with the challenges facing the province of food insecure, the North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development MEC Desbo Mohono put the Food Security programme as the number one priority.

 

MEC has since launched a massive provincial  drive to create awareness on food security programme to enable the people in the rural areas of the North West whom are affected the most to overcome poverty and hunger also to build partnership . The department has also resolved to channel more resources towards agri-projects geared at eradicating hunger and poverty at households’ level. The aim is

 

“The seed has been planted,we are now begging to yield the results indeed we cannot force someone to hear a message they are not ready to receive but we must never underestimate the power planting a seed” said MEC Desbo Mohono on addressing the issue of food security.

 

MEC Mohono emphasis that focus should be placed on capacity building, employment creation and promoting awareness on own food production which is one way to improve food security of poor household.

 

The department so far reached 1974 households during the following activities:

Matlwang village near Potchefstroom: Food Security outreach programme

Identified households received goats, African chickens, Ponds, tunnel fingerlings, seedlings, solar panel.

 

During the World Food day celebration Ntswana le Metsing :

The focus was on sustainable projects delivered by the department as well as encouraging residents to start planting on fields that are lying fallow in order to increase food production to fight the scourge of poverty, hunger and malnutrition amongst communities.

 

World Food Day is an international day celebrated every year around the world on 16 October in honor of the date of the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 1945. The day is celebrated widely by many other organizations concerned with food security, including the World Food Programme and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.

 

Collective action across 150 countries is what makes World Food Day one of the most celebrated days of the UN calendar. Hundreds of events and outreach activities bring together governments, businesses, NGOs, the media, and general public. They promote worldwide awareness and action for those who suffer from hunger and for the need to ensure healthy diets for all.

 

“It cannot be right that we are very low when we are compared with other provinces in terms of food security. We must change how we do things and have more people with access to nutritious and enough food to keep them satisfied, healthy and active”. said Mohono

 

“If we work together, we can build a future where we’re able to nourish to flourish as a province. Our plans are clear. We will continue with provincial interventions to assist impoverished and vulnerable people, promote the planting of household, school and community gardens,” MEC Mohono concluded.

 

Establishment of Backyard Gardens 17 vegetable gardens established
Distribution of Indigenous Chickens and Feed 21 households received 20 chickens and a roaster as well a 7 bags of feed
Distribution of Fruit Trees 115 households received 2 fruit trees each
Food Parcels A total of 50 food parcels were distributed to 50 households

 

PHOKENG OUREACH PROGRAMME: EMPOWERING VULNERABLE GROUPS THROUGH AGRICULTURAL PROJECTS

In response to high levels of food insecurities and as part of the drive to fight poverty and hunger amongst local communities, MEC Mohono handed over garden inputs, planted various vegetable gardens and fruit trees in number of households and community centres in villages around Phokeng, Rustenburg. Held under the theme “Addressing Poverty & Malnutrition: the plight of Rural Women in Agriculture”, the aim of the project was to improve food security, up-liftment of community projects and to empower vulnerable groups to start working the land and producing food.

 

Ganyesa Food Security outreach Programme

100 house hold benefited from this project beneficiaries were supported with tunnels, tools, seed and fertilizer. They produce on the back yards on 10m² to 20m² for consumption and selling.

 

Marikana Food Security outreach programme benefits :

DESCRIPTION ACTIVITIES AND SUPPORT
Establishment of Backyard Gardens Forty one (41) vegetable gardens established for households and  three (3)  community institutions that include a rehabilitation and disability  centers
Distribution of Indigenous Chickens and Feed 5 households belonging to women and older person received 10 indigenous chickens 2 bags of feed
Garden Tools 41 households and the 3 institutions receive basic garden tool package

 

With food security programme the department want to ensure that everyone has access to food, as it is defined by the United Nations Committee on World Food Security, that Food Security means that all people, at all times, have physical, social, and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food that meets their food preferences and dietary needs for an active and healthy life.

 

During the lockdown period total of 273 households were assisted with backyard gardens the number of community institutional gardens were also assisted.

 

ENDS.

Issued by:

Communication Services Directorate

Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako

Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020

Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za

Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard

Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard

Twitter: @nwpg _dard

CALL FOR 2021/2022 PROGRAMME/PROJECTS APPLICATIONS FOR FUNDING

MEDIA STATEMENT

 

Date: Monday, 03 August  2020

 

CALL FOR 2021/2022 PROGRAMME/PROJECTS APPLICATIONS FOR FUNDING

The North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD), together with National Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development  (DALRRD) calls for 2021/2022 financial year funding applications for  CASP and Ilima/Letsema conditional grants. Funding will be based on two departmental prioritized programmes, namely: Animal Husbandry and Arable Farming. Funding consideration will be based on commodity value chain.

Target farmer categories for 2021/2022 funding are subsistence farmers, smallholder farmers as well as commercial farmers.

Applicants will choose to be supported with on and off farm infrastructure, production inputs, enterprise and business development, and farmer training; skills development and capacity building.

For one to apply, one must be having the following:

  • Applicants will have to demonstrate keenness to farm and run a profitable business and must be registered on the Provincial farmer database. Other requirements include:
  • Valid confirmation of access to land (Tittle deed, Tribal Resolution, Permission to Occupy, Minimum  5 years Lease Agreement)
  • Proof of access to water for irrigation projects i.e. fruits, vegetables and other irrigated crops (water license/rights or proof of application)
  • Business Plan
  • Farming operation should be able to create permanent and/ or temporary jobs
  • Where necessary, evidence of relevant commodity authorisations to be provided (Environmental Impact Assessments, Virgin Land Plough Certificates, Aquaculture & Fishing Permits, etc.)
  • Application form completed
  • Certified South African ID copy; not older than 3 months.
  • Non-Government Employees or Political office bearers.

 

Priority will be given to applicants who are already farming, applicants/farms that have off-take agreements, historically disadvantaged individuals, vulnerable groups (i.e. Youth, Women and People Living with Disabilities), and applicants who have acquired land/farms privately without state assistance, farming and/or agricultural enterprises that are in line with and fit into the Agriculture and Agro-processing Masterplan (AAMP) and to applicants who have never been supported by an organ of state before.

Application forms are obtainable from all Local Agricultural Offices (LAOs) across the province and should be directly submitted back to the Local Agricultural Offices on or before 14 August 2020.

No late, faxed or emailed applications will be accepted. Applicants will be given reference number upon receipt of the application. The department reserves the right to consider any application. Successful applicants will be required to enter into funding agreement with the department. For more information, please visit the nearest Local Area Offices or contact departmental officials on the following numbers:

DR RUTH SEGOMOTSI MOMPATI DISTRICT

GREATER TAUNG LAO: Mr Thaelo Letlhogela                053 994 1975 / 072 794 0787

LEKWA TEEMANE LAO: Mr. Ogopoleng Motshabi 053 994 1816 / 072 772 8973

MAMUSA LAO: Ms. Tuelo Sebekedi 053 963 1339 / 072 781 2345

KAGISANO MOLOPO LAO: Mr. Robert Gasealahwe 053 998 3343 / 072 793 8058

NALEDI LAO: Mr. Tshetlho Makhwana  053 927 2274 / 072 795 0434

TAUNG IRRIGATION SCHEME: Mr Laurens Sephakga 053 994 2238 / 072 794 2568

 

DR KENNETH KAUNDA DISTRICT

JB MARKS LAO: Mr. Kgwarai Sebokolodi  018 297 5330 / 082 491 0637

MATLOSANA LAO: Ms. Salome Modise   018 462 2023 / 072 811 6971

MAQUASSI HILLS LAO: Mr Kgosithebe Seolwane  018 596 1168 / 072 807 1900

 

NGAKA MODIRI MOLEMA DISTRICT

DITSOBOTLA LAO: Ms. Cynthia  Gonyane 018 632 7400 / 082 949 4381

MAHIKENG LAO: Ms. Seipei Maphage  018 381 1392 / 072 784 2436

RAMOTHSERE MOILOA LAO: Mr. Rueben Moiloa 018 363 3811 / 072 780 2738

RATLOU LAO: Mr. Timothy Molema  018 368 0131 / 072 784 3210

TSWAING LAO: Jonathan Segobola              053 948 0061 / 072 786 2980

 

BOJANALA DISTRICT

RUSTENBURG LAO: Ms. Dineo Mokgatlhe 014 592 4954 / 072 804 2146

KGETLENG LAO: Ms. Dineo Mokgatlhe 014 592 4954 / 072 804 2146

MOSES KOTANE LAO: Ms Pulane Molebethe   014 553 2137 / 082 490 8531

MADIBENG LAO: Mr. Solly Molebalwa   012 709 2606 / 072 815 5485

MORETELE LAO: Mr. David Sebidi  012 714 3902 / 072 808 6784

 

For further information contact Gontse Padi 066 305 9648

 

Issued by:

Communication Services Directorate

Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako

Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020

Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za

Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard

Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard

Twitter: @nwpg _dard

MEC DESBO MOHONO DELIVERS PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT TO FARMING COMMUNITIES

In an effort to curb the possible spread of the corona virus and to ensure that there is adherence to safety requirements in different farms during the Covid-19 outbreak, MEC Desbo Mohono of North West Department Agriculture and Rural Development is currently visiting a number of agricultural projects across the province.

Mohono kick started her visits few weeks ago by visiting number of farms and agricultural projects in and around the Bojanala Platinum District Municipality, farms and projects in Dr Kenneth Kaunda District Municipality and last week she was in Ngaka Modiri  Molema District visiting some of the farms and handing over PPEs to number of farmers.

During her visits, MEC Mohono and the team takes workers through basic steps to protect themselves against possible spread of the virus and hand to workers personal protective equipment (PPEs) such as masks and sanitizers.

The MEC stressed the importance of remaining cautious at all times during this crisis and ensuring that workers are given the much needed safety gears and sanitizers as they continue doing their work.

“You must wear gloves, cover your mouths with these masks, and sanitize your hands or wash them regularly for at least 20 seconds. Always when you working among yourselves keep at least a meter away from each other.

“Should you as workers get infected it could also affect the very same goods they you are working on. Therefore the safety should be a priority to all of you,” MEC Mohono advised farm workers.

Mohono emphasised that the department was classified as essential service because food production cannot be halted. The agricultural sector has a huge responsibility of producing food for the people of North West and for the nation as a whole. Production in farms cannot stop, but we must be safe as we produce food for communities hence as a department we are handing over safety material to these workers. We need them to be at work because they play a significant role,” she said.

“We acknowledge the considerable strides made in fighting this deadly disease, but now more than ever we need to intensify our efforts. Through unity and solidarity we will definitely beat this pandemic.  I am therefore pleading and urging farm owners that they do not underestimate the dangers posed by this virus and that they make sure that their workers are supplied with safety material,” MEC Mohono pleads.

Farmers and farmer workers in farms she already visited appreciated MEC Mohono’s efforts to come to explain the lockdown regulations to them in depth and what measures they should take, while they continue to do their work.

MEC Mohono will continue with this programme of visiting agricultural projects and farms to hand PPEs in response to government’s call for support in the fight against the scourge of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

This week the team is in Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Municipality where farmers will receive their PPEs. In her interactions with these workers, MEC Mohono and the team emphasise the importance of adhering to the lockdown regulations and measures that are implemented in the province to curb the spread of the virus.

CAPTION:

MEC Desbo Mohono handing over personal protective equipment (PPEs) such as masks and sanitizers to farmers and farm workers.

In her interactions with these workers, MEC Mohono and the team and emphasised the importance of adhering to the lockdown regulations and measures that are implemented in the province to curb the spread of the virus.

 

Issued by:

Communication Services Directorate

Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako

Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020

Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za

Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard

Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard

Twitter: @nwpg _dard

AGRICULTURE REMAINS AN ESSENTIAL SERVICES DURING THE COVID-19 LOCKDOWN

The North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development assures the Public and Farmers that  agriculture and food supply sector is one of the essential  system and will remain functional during the 21- days lockdown as announced by president to deal with the COVID -19  pandemic.

 

Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development was today briefing the media and announced that Agricultural production in all its forms will remain uncompromised. “This includes all services including provision of Veterinary and advisory services. Live auctions of livestock and sale of other agricultural commodities will continue but under the strict conditions as prescribed by the President” said Minister Didiza.

 

The departmental officials will continue to work with the industry on sector operational procedures that will ensure adherence to the measures announced by the President that includes provision of sanitation to employees within the sector especially farm workers.  Food value chain role players are advised to strictly comply and adhere to strict health regulations to contain and arrest COVID-19.

 

MEC Desbo Mohono urge the public not to embark on panic buying as the province has sufficient food supply for all and to be considerate and purchase only what they need.

 

Issued by:

Communication Services Directorate

Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako

Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020

Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za

Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard

Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard

    Twitter: @nwpg _dard

DEPARTMENT RESPOND TO COVID-19 OUTBREAK  

The North West Department of Agriculture and Rural Development heeds President Cyril Ramaphosa’s declaration of a national state of disaster in terms of the Disaster Management Act by halting all departmental events and closing of the Potchefstroom and Taung Agricultural  colleges until after Easter weekend.

 

This is in an effort to help prevent the spread of the Corona Virus that has been declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

 

MEC Desbo Mohono has also met with Organized Agricultural Farmers Associations to discuss the pandemic and requested them to exercise caution by putting stringent measures for prevention and control of the virus to protect their employees to reduce the impact of the virus on our society and economy.

The department has also implemented the guidelines from Department of Employment and Labour in the workplace by availing hands sanitizers to all employees and encouraged them to wash their hands requrlary.

Issued by:

Communication Services Directorate

Enquiries: Ms Emelda Setlhako

Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020

Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za

Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard

Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard

    Twitter: @nwpg _dard

Strategy development to curb food insecurity

The food security plenarysession held at the Potchefstroom Agricultural College yielded successful multi-disciplinary discussions with various stakeholders and key role-players in the agri-sector to develop strategies that will address food insecurity. The two day session also served as a platform for sharing research findings and innovative farming techniques with farmers who intend to collaborate with government and the private sector to work towards sustainable supply of nutritious food in the province.

Presentationsfrom the five strategic plans included topics on establishing linkages between provincial departments for food security strategies; strategy for school, community and food gardens; identifying and streamlining support for agricultural enterprises; and enhancing production through alignments with technologiesand enterprise development for smallholder farmers.

In attendance was North West University Professor from the School of Agricultural Sciences,Simon Letsoalo who extensively spoke on “The Importance of Directed Agricultural Extension and Advisory Services Agricultural”. Letsoalo highlighted a challenge faced by extension and advisory services practitioners who are tasked with executing duties outside of their scope. He said that it was imperative that crop or livestock advisorsfocus solely on their specialisation to maximise production for farmers.

In attendance was North West University Professor from the School of Agricultural Sciences,Simon Letsoalo who extensively spoke on “The Importance of Directed Agricultural Extension and Advisory Services Agricultural”. Letsoalo highlighted a challenge faced by extension and advisory services practitioners who are tasked with executing duties outside of their scope. He said that it was imperative that crop or livestock advisorsfocus solely on their specialisation to maximise production for farmers.

Gomolemo Motitswane, a female farmer from Kagisano-Molopo Municipality said farmers felt that the session was most resourceful. “The sessions were very informative; they were focused on the future of agriculture. It’s a pity that at times as farmers, we do not get implement what we learn from these types of workshops. However, the department should also implement Professor Letsoalo’s recommendation of directed extension services and provide farmers with continuous mentorship and monitoring in order to ensure that they yield quality produce and expand their businesses” said Gomolemo.

Award-winning young farmer, Pheko Mofokeng from Phaphamang Environmental Organisation has grown his agri-business in leaps and bounds and has been involved in mentoring young agriculture graduates on his farm, encouraged those passionate about agriculture to commit to ensuring that food insecurity is alleviated through their efforts and love for the sector. “Food insecurity cannot only be a government problem. It is important that we skill and impart knowledge on young people so that they are also able to contribute to tackling the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality through agriculture,” he quipped.

Renewal energy, technology, agriculture and food security were among the attention-drawing presentations that were discussed in length by the collective. Botswana University of Agriculture and Natural Resources Vice Chancellor, Dr Jespar Rees said that farmers should identify opportunities in agriculture that have high growth potential and consider the use of appropriate scale mechanisation and automation to improve production, simplify harvesting, agro-processing and packaging.
Representatives from other institutions such as the Agricultural Research Council (ARC), Italian Embassy, National Department of Social Development, FarmPin and SABIA contributed to the workshop and have vowed to work together with the department towards a common goal of addressing food insecurity, supporting farmers and ensuring that household quality nutrition is realised through agriculture.

Issued by:
Communication Services Directorate
Enquiries: MsEmeldaSetlhako
Tel: 018 389 5684/ Cell: 060 745 4020
Email: ESetlhako@nwpg.gov.za
Website:www.nwpg.gov.za/dard
Facebook:www.facebook.com/dard
Twitter: @nwpg _dard