MARIENTAL – Mariental residents could soon all be having a backyard garden if the Hardap Regional Governor Katrina Hanse-Himarwa gets her way. The governor held a meeting with senior government officials last week to discuss the establishment of backyard gardens at Mariental as a pilot project, which will later be expanded to other towns, such as Maltahöhe, Rehoboth, Gibeon, Stampriet and Aranos.
At the meeting Hanse-Himarwa said all hospitals, clinics and schools in the Hardap Region should have an own backyard garden in order to promote food security. She wants the project to be up and running by May this year and residents will be assisted to acquire seeds and other necessities. A community meeting will be held soon to sensitize the inhabitants and allow them to express their interest by registering for the project.
“We are constantly complaining about lack of food as well as other nutritional problems. Now is the time for all of us to stand up and do something for ourselves,” said Hanse-Himarwa. She said several African countries where backyard gardening has been successfully implemented promised to assist the Hardap Region in establishing backyard gardens. “Therefore people must now stand up and show what we as a nation can also do,” she said.
Hanse-Himarwa proposed that the Mariental Municipality must act as a custodian of the project, while the regional council would monitor, control and supervise the backyard gardening programme.
The governor said although the final modalities still have to be worked out with the regional government and other stakeholders, nobody in the Hardap Region must say that the provision of food is not their function. “All the government departments must put their shoulder to the wheel to make the project a success,” she said.
By Hoandi !Gaeb