Invest seriously in irrigation farming, MP urges government

By Lake Zone Watch Writer

The government has been challenged to seriously invest in irrigation farming if the agricultural sector is to gain desirable and ambitious outcomes.

Contributing to the budget estimates for the Ministry of Agriculture in Dodom recently, the Member of Parliament for Musoma Rural Prof Sospeter Muhongo said the process sorrounding the rolling out of irrigation farming should now be concluded.

According to Prof Muhongo, the country’s agricultural revolution will not be attained if the sector still depends on traditional methods, including rain –fed agriculture.

“It is high time we walked the talk and implemented irrigation farming if we want to see agriculture recording anticipated milestone. Our agriculture should remain the pillar of our economy and contribute to at least 10 percent economic growth. Also, it should be able to ensure stable food security and create employment to majority of our people,” said Prof Muhongo.

The MP commended the current efforts and innovations within the ministry but said consultations on critical areas, such as irrigation farming, should now be concluded so that implementation could take off.

Prof Muhongo underscored the importance of applying modern facilities and technologies in the country’s agricultural drive, urging the government to learn and emulate the strategies used by other developing countries like India, China and even Ethiopia, with a good track record in irrigation farming.

He was of the view that application of tractors, recommended fertilizers and seeds would work very well in the farming of strategic crops like maize, wheat, rice, cassava and even hoticulture.

The soft-spoken MP said Tanzania could win more foreign markets if authorities worked on a number of reforms in agriculture, citing the last few years when the country failed to export cassava to China. This was despite being assured of ready market in the giant Asian economy, which spends around 2 bilion USD a year on imported cassava.

On utilization of basins, Prof Muhongo said Mara region has six of them, two of which are in Musoma Rural, suggesting that these could greatly be of use in the production of both food and cash crops.

254 thoughts on “Invest seriously in irrigation farming, MP urges government

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