Windhoek-More than 50 crop producers from Aminuis Constituency, joined by about 15 fellows from nearby constituencies, including Epukiro and Otjombinde, have since yesterday been converging at Corridor 13 in the constituency for a three-day workshop on backyard gardening.
An agricultural extension officer of the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry (MAWF) at Corridor 13, Jaurovandu Kaevarua, says the workshop is in line of the government’s objective of working towards food self-reliance and self-sufficiency, which entails households feeding themselves by establishing backyard gardens, and by extension also supplying the local communities with their surplus yields from such gardens by selling the surplus.
The presentations are being made by local experts from the extension offices in the constituency itself. Among them is Kaevarua and his colleagues from the main extension office in the constituency, as well as Carlos Tjiho, who is based in the settlement of Aminuis.
They are joined by extension officers from other constituencies in the region, such as Betel Kazapua from Eiseb area in the Otjombinde Constituency, and Rodrique Maswabi from Gobabis.
Special focus during the workshop is to be put on dryland crop production, a long-running programme typically presented at the beginning of the rainy season.
Although a latecomer to crop production, relative to other constituencies in Omaheke, such as Epukiro and Otjombinde, Kaevarua said interest among farmers in the constituency has lately been increasing with the realisation of the importance of crop production in boosting animal farming.
Testimony to the constituency’s increased awareness of crop production is that it will in May 2018 host the annual regional crop production day, a first for the constituency. Otjombinde Constituency hosted the day this year.
The constituency is also making use of the occasion to get its cultivators’ association up and running in line of other constituencies in the region, which long have established such associations.
The association was established in May, an idea that occurred to the crop producers following their familiarisation visits to Epukiro and Otjinene. During the workshop, the local constituency is also expected to confirm its commitment to hosting the Regional Crop Production Day.