ENGLKINY

Friday 24 February 2017 21:24

MINAGRIGovernment
 
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Farmers and local officials commit to ensure fair distribution of new cassava varieties in Southern Province


Farmers who are multiplying cassava varieties that are tolerant to Cassava Brown streak disease (CBSD) in Southern Province and local authorities have committed themselves to ensure fair distribution of the new cassava varieties so that all cassava growers get clean planting materials the soonest possible. 

The commitment was made on December 21, 2016 in Nyanza district during a meeting that brought together cassava multipliers, representatives of farmer cooperatives, mayors and agronomists officers from all districts of the Southern Province. The meeting was also attended by Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources, Dr Gerardine Mukeshimana, Governor of the Southern Province, Marie Rose Mureshyankwano and staff from Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB).

The meeting recommended that cassava multipliers, who previously got new cassava varieties from RAB, must give the same quantity of cuttings to their neighbours free of charge in order to provide all farmers with clean planting materials. Participants also agreed to set up local committees that will oversee the distribution exercise to ensure transparency.  

Minister Mukeshimana urged both local authorities and the farmers to strive for enhanced distribution of the new cassava cuttings; since the government has been investing a lot of money to import cassava varieties that are free from viral diseases. 

Figures from Rwanda Agriculture Board (RAB) indicate that about 20 million cuttings of the new cassava varieties are expected to be multiplied on 1000ha during season 2017A and 1000ha in 2017B. The new cassava varieties have been proven to be tolerant to Cassava Brown streak disease (CBSD).

Cassava is an important crop when it comes to ensure food security and increasing income for many households in the country, especially in Southern Province.