Elita Chikwati Senior Agriculture Reporter
Government has announced the new Cold Storage Company (CSC) board expected to spearhead the Command Livestock Programme and improve the national herd, particularly in communal areas. Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister Dr Joseph Made said on Thursday that the new board included three members from the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) because they had invested in CSC.
“The board is expected to focus on the strategic direction of rebuilding the national herd so the country could revive its beef export markets, particularly in Europe and Asia,” he said.
“The new board should pay particular attention to the communal sector which holds the highest numbers of livestock in terms of the beef sector. Of the 5,6 million herd of cattle, the biggest number comes from the communal sector.
“Of interest to this board is the gender balance. As Minister of Agriculture, I expect this board to deal with matters that relate to the management in terms of resuscitating the opportunities of the workers, paying attention to employment creation.”
Dr Made said CSC played a vital role in Bulawayo and other livestock producing areas as the major employer.
“I hope the development of the livestock through Command Agriculture will have a ripple effect across the country,” he said.
The board will be chaired by Mrs Sylvia Khumalo Jiyane, who was on the previous board and deputised by Mr Nemrod Chiminya, who is a seasoned technical person and also assists on the Tobacco industry and Marketing board.
Dr Made said Mr Chiminya would bring in his expertise in tobacco to assist in the livestock sector.
Committee members are Mrs Emily Mumbengegwi, Mr Peter Nyoni, Mrs Cecilia Paradza, Mr Bekhithemba Nkomo, Dr Anxious Masuka, Mrs Rufaro Mazunze, Mr Khodholo Setaboli, CSC chief executive Mr Ngoni Chinogaramombe and Ministry of Agriculture representatives Dr Unesu Ushewokunze Obatolu and Engineer Reston Muzamhindo.
Dr Made said Dr Obatolu would bring in her vast knowledge and experience in animal research, while Mr Muzamhindo was an expert in mechanisation and irrigation development.
“I expect to work with the new board and looking forward to modernise CSC operations and support farmers with small to large machinery,” he said.
“Soon, I will be meeting the new board. I am grateful to the old board for working hard and I appreciate their efforts. I hope we will turn around the fortunes of CSC.”