RWAMAGANA– The Eastern Province has earmarked at least 200,000 hectares of consolidated land for cultivation purposes this season, the Governor, Dr Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, has announced.
Kirabo unveiled the plan while addressing local leaders from the seven districts of the province yesterday.
The province projects an estimated 3,658,298 tonnes of maize, bananas, rice, pineapples, beans and coffee from combined harvests, she noted.
The authorities said the overall aim was to maximise crop production to ensure food security.
To realise the projected harvests, Kirabo said irrigation and mechanised farming would be intensified.
“It is evident that our agriculture is under transformation, from traditional to modern ways. We are blessed with sufficient rains and fertile soils...cases of drought are too minimal to account for anything,” she said.
“The country and region should set eyes on our next production...it will be enormous.”
The Mayor of Bugesera District, Louis Rwagaju, said that the new approach to improve agricultural production has had an incredible impact on communities.
He, however, maintained that irrigation mechanism should be improved to enable every sector to be as productive as the other.
“In the past, Bugesera District had become synonymous with hunger and famine, but today we even supply food to other areas. It all comes down to proper plans...the thousands of hectares of crops will further strengthen our food security,” he said.
Dansira Mukambarushimana, 60, a farmer in Mushikiri Sector of Kirehe District, told The New Times that farmers view agricultural mechanisation as a lasting solution to poverty.
“I have been using a hand hoe for the last 40 years...it only leaves you in perpetual poverty. But now we can hire tractors from the district to work on our farms. I will only be limited by age, but for the youth, the sky is the limit,” she observed.