KIREHE – Local authorities have said that the district expects to produce over 51,000 tonnes of maize under the new system of land consolidation this season.
The Vice Mayor in charge of Economic Development Benson Muhikira, told The New Times that although some people were reluctant to diversify crop production, most residents have now embraced the idea of land consolidation fast enough, to embark on extensive maize production.
“We expect to produce a minimum of 51,000 tonnes of maize this season. We are grateful to residents for taking the advice of land consolidation seriously,” he said.
Nathalie Niyonagira, the district agriculture officer said that the production of maize this season is a good beginning and appreciative move by all concerned.
She reiterated the need to sensitise people on extensive farming.
“What we have produced this season is just a tip of the iceberg. The district has the capacity to produce much more to serve the country and neighbouring countries,” Niyonagira said.
“Some farmers never cared to apply artificial fertilisers efficiently, because they wanted to continue producing sorghum. We cannot of course forget the effect of drought, and heavy and stormy rains that destroyed some maize fields. We thus expect a much better harvest next season,” she stressed.
Juliana Nyiravuguziga, 35, a maize farmer in Bukora village in Nyamugari sector sounded upbeat on this year’s production.
“My 20 hectares were affected by long dry spell. Nevertheless, I expect to get much more than I invested. I am not discouraged because natural hazards are not always there,” she said.
Kirehe district planted maize on over 17,000 hectares under the land consolidation program initiated by the government. The type of maize grain known as Situka was imported from Tanzania.