Displayed with permission from allAfrica.com
More Namibian farmers have become beneficiaries of the South-to-South Cooperation (SSC) agreement, which has brought more Chinese experts to the African country to teach farming technologies.
The SSC agreement, launched in 2014 to boost agricultural production and tackle food and nutrition insecurity in Namibia, has seen a lot of farmers, in particular from the northeast Zambezi Region, gain and benefit to become more self sustaining.
Earlier this week, 30 farmers attended a two-day training workshop on vegetable production, which was conducted by the Chinese experts in Katima Mulilo in the Zambezi Region.
Lynnety Sinalumbu, a farmer from Bukalo, situated about 40 kilometres southeast of Katima Mulilo, is one of the participants of the training sessions.
“I learnt a lot of Chinese technologies on horticulture production. Sometimes it seems like it’s hard to grow vegetables, but simple solutions to problems can easily be implemented,” she told Xinhua.
For instance, the Chinese experts illustrated how simple nets could be used as pest control mechanisms, which she said are easy to apply, Sinalumbu said.
Agricultural connexions volunteer Courtney Mbanga, also from Katima Mulilo, said the training was interesting as she grasped more about backyard gardening.
“The training which focused on vegetable production was really interesting and informative. The experts also touched on rice production, which was equally interesting,” she added.
Mbanga also expressed wishes for the Chinese experts to go into fields to better train the farmers.
“A practical touch is needed for the trainings that we get. A hands-on approach in the form of farm demo and trials, is needed, so that we also can be able to teach other members of the community,” she said.
Calling for more of such training sessions, Mushabati, director of the Directorate of Agriculture Production, Extension and Engineering Services in the Zambezi Region, described the training as an eye opener.
“I encourage similar training to take place in future to improve food security in the Region,” he added.
The 1.5 million-U.S.-dollars SSC agreement signed by Namibia, China and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), will run for two years and hopes have run high for more benefits to be delivered.