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PM calls on farmers to increase production


July 10, 2020 2 min read

2 min read


MASERU - Prime Minister Dr Moeketsi Majoro, has called on farmers to increase local production so as to tackle hunger and poverty whose effects are likely to double, induced by the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus.
This, he said when addressing farmers with regard to summer cropping, during a meeting held at the ’Manthabiseng Convention Centre on Monday.

He said Lesotho has arable land with fertile soil, thereby urging farmers to increase their production so that they could consume and also sell their products. Dr Majoro expressed great concern that as a result of poverty brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, countries such as South Africa might ban exporting products to Lesotho, thus emphasising a need to increase production. 

The prime minister therefore encouraged individual farmers not to work in silos. He said a Cabinet Sub Committee has been formed and is mandated to ensure that the goal of increasing local production is achieved. Sharing the same sentiments, Deputy Prime Minister, Mathibeli Mokhothu asserted that Lesotho losses billions of Maloti importing products such as poultry, vegetables and eggs among others. 

He therefore also challenged farmers to increase local production for the economic growth of Lesotho and to help in the attainment of the country's number one goal in line with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), ending poverty. For his part, the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security Tefo Mapesela said as part of extending a helping hand to farmers during this difficult time, the government has decided to subsidise a variety of seeds by 60percent.


He also assured wool and mohair farmers that they have been given permission to sell their wool where they desire, noting that agreement will be made at different wool-sheds. One of the farmers, Tsatsi Sephoko suggested that the country should produce its own seeds to avoid using imported seeds which he called – “rejects”.


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He said farmers who engage in block farming work hard during the last cropping season, however noting that they have not received even a single cent till today. Another farmer, Pheello Masia said they have a problem of their products being rejected by the franchises claiming that they are of no accredited standards.


He therefore pleaded to the government to find market for their products. The meeting was said to be paving way for a series of meetings to be held after every three months in order to ensure Lesotho increases local production.

LENA

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