MVIWATA commends President Magufuli for tackling farmers’ concerns

The National Network of Farmers Groups Tanzania (MVIWATA) has paid outstanding tribute to His Excellency President John Pombe Magufuli for taking various measures that seek to tackle real issues that constrain development of smallholder farmers in the country.

Through his remarks given at different occasions, the President has expressed his true intentions to give relief to small-scale producers in the country that feed the entire nation without reaping tangible benefits of their noble work of agriculture, livestock keeping and fishery.

The farmers’ organization was particularly touched by the speech of HE President he had made while talking to Chato residents, where he noted to be clearly offended by the agony and sufferings of small scale farmers in the country, which make large part of the population.

Reading the statement on behalf of the members, the MVIWATA Chairperson Ms Veronica Sophu recently here in Morogoro said smallholder farmers were happy by how the President has swiftly taken various measures to identify and address the concerns of small-scale farmers in the country.

“Specifically, we commend him for eliminating nuisance tax, charges and tariffs that were big burden to us. Also we applaud his order to reduce trade barriers on the main road so as traders can transport commodities including farmers produce at easy.

We would like also to commend the President for his decision to repossessing undeveloped pieces of land that were held by investors. The move has come at the right time where there is public outcry in many areas where their land was grabbed by people with financial muscles.”

Although farmers have so many challenges, Ms Sophu told journalists present at the media briefing that smallholder farmers were confident that the 5th phase government will deal with all constraints that irk farmers one after another.

She mentioned some of the challenges remaining to include land security, fake agricultural- inputs, lack of markets for their produce and lack of capital and financial support to expand their activities.

In his hardly six months in office, the President has shown his clear vision to cutting costs and taking administrative action against incompetent and corrupt public servants that have contributed to surging of land conflicts in the country.

On his side, the MVIWATA executive director Stephen Ruvuga said it was heartening to see, for the first time, 40 per cent of the Agricultural sector going to finance development projects in the 2016/17 financial year, showing clear intention to boost the sector.

This is a big step and should be supported by all Tanzanians who have good intention with our country, he said.

“We recognize that the President Magufuli has set priorities in the social services including education, health and water infrastructure in the new budget, we believe under his leadership, the agricultural sector will reach at least 10 per cent of annual national budget.

This is because agriculture provides direct employment to 80 per cent of Tanzanians, let alone those employed in transporting, trading and in crop processing industries.”

Members of MVIWATA strongly back all measures that the President has taken in cutting government expenditure, increasing revenues collection , restoring discipline and accountability in the public and private sectors while encouraging Tanzanians to work really hard wherever they are.

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MVIWATA Board Chairperson Ms Veronica Sophu reading the statement. In her left, is the Vice chairman Mr Haji Usi

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