Innocent Ruwende Harare Bureau
THE government has set up task teams for the establishment of feed lots for supplementary feeding of cattle in the five provinces which have recorded a combined death of more than 10,000 livestock.
Addressing chiefs at a workshop organised by the Zimbabwe Association for Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation of the Offender, the Minister of Rural Development, Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and Heritage, Abednico Ncube, said the task teams would be deployed in Manicaland, Masvingo, Midlands, Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South.
He encouraged people in the affected provinces to sell part of their livestock to avert losses resulting from livestock deaths.
“I’m advised that a sizeable number of cattle have died in Matabeleland South, Manicaland and Matabeleland North provinces,” said Minister Ncube.
“Chiefs are, therefore, required, in their respective communities, to encourage people to sell part of their livestock so as to avert losses resulting from death of cattle.”
Minister Ncube said the government was quite aware of the impact of drought affecting rural communities and was working tirelessly to ensure that sufficient grain was imported from neighbouring countries.
He said the perennial drought conditions had been worsened by climate change, which resulted in erratic rainfall patterns across the Sadc sub-region.
“I’m aware that some affected communities are not accessing the said maize from Grain Marketing Board, hence I’ve directed the provincial administrators to work out the modalities of ensuring accessibility of maize,” said Minister Ncube.
“As part of our collective efforts to eradicate food insecurity and malnutrition; it is critical, therefore, that chiefs should continue championing and spearheading the Zunde Ramambo/Isiphala Senkosi programme.”
Minister Ncube urged chiefs to make a rapid and holistic intervention following growing concerns over the increase in moral decadence across Zimbabwe.
Cases of rape, incest, homosexuality and bestiality, he said, had become rampant and another sad and worrying development was the increase in cold blood murders.
Most chiefs raised concern over their welfare and urged the government to improve their benefits.
Chief Musarurwa raised concern over the allocation of land in rural areas.
“Our councils are just allocating land to churches and individuals without notifying chiefs,” he said, which led Minister Ncube to urge councils to consult chiefs before parcelling out land.