May 12, 2012
There is need to intensify development in rural areas through co-operatives and industrialisation since the areas can immensely contribute to the country’s Gross Domestic Product, a Cabinet Minister has said. Addressing hundreds of villagers during the commissioning of 122 various projects valued at US$37 million in Mudzi on Thursday, Minister of State in Vice President Joice Mujuru’s office Sylvester Nguni described rural areas as the “bedrock” of Zimbabwe’s development.
The projects that are being carried out in Mudzi North, West and South constituencies are set to uplift the livelihoods of thousands of villagers in the drought-prone area. Community Trust Development Technology in collaboration with other non-governmental organisation is spearheading the projects, which include an irrigation scheme, dip tanks, dams construction and rehabilitation, nutrition gardens and cattle sales pens.
Said Minister Nguni: “The assets I am handing over to you are a testimony that rural communities can be a major contributor to the national economy. “Such developmental projects in rural areas have to be intensified as we continue fighting the illegal economic sanctions imposed on us by the West.”
He urged the people to work hard and desist from relying on food handouts.
“Be self-reliant. You have been given a hand by the various stakeholders and they have offered another US$15 million and 28 590 metric tones of beans, wheat and cooking oil for the continuation of the programme for another year but that does not mean we have to wait for their assistance. Let us make use of the direction they have given us and produce such that we stand on our own,” he said.
NGO’s, said Minister Nguni, should complement Government efforts and stop meddling in the country’s politics.
“I am happy to get a report from the local leadership that the NGOs working here are abiding by the laws. This should be the case countrywide not what we are seeing in other provinces where they (NGOs) are spreading the gospel of regime change. Government will not hesitate to ban such organisations for their intention is to destabilise the country politically,” he said.