Govt calls for public, private partnerships

Government has appealed to the private sector to assist thousands of Agritex officers, who are facing transport problems, which affected their day-to day-duties in mostly rural areas.

BY Jairos Saunyama

Speaking at the launch of the new PAN 4M-23 maize seed at Korona Farm in Beatrice on Tuesday, Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development deputy minister David Marapira said while government was trying its best to secure motorbikes for Agritex officers, there was need for the private sector to assist in empowering the officers.

“I am aware that our officers are travelling long distances to reach farmers due to shortage of motorcycles. As government, we are working on a programme to provide them with motorcycles,” he said.

“But we are also expecting our partners in the private sector, like Pannar, that while they make more money, they should think of the Agritex officers, who are promoting their products and assist by securing them motorbikes.”

There are 4 200 Agritex officers in the country.

Pannar Seeds launched the new seed variety that matures early and is tolerant to diseases. The new variety is a hybrid that ensures high yields providing an average of eight tonnes per hectare.

“Because of our high literacy rate and good policies, Zimbabwe is leading in the African environment in terms of hybrid adaptation, which is now over 95%. I believe that this new variety will be quickly adopted by the farmers so as to improve our yields and food security in line with our ZimAsset vision cluster one, which is food security and nutrition,” Marapira said.

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