Wakudumo’s N$1m agri investment loss
29 April 2021 | Agriculture
After investing close to N$1 million in a 50-hectare agriculture project, Lucas Wakudumo is now seeking government assistance following the loss of 40 hectares of maize and 10 hectares of mahangu.
The Wakudumo farm is at Mushowoji village in the Shambyu area.
Most of the crops have died because of late planting and heavy rains, according to Wakudumo.
Wakudumo said he only planted at the beginning of January because of a delay seed provision by the government.
He said they were informed in November last year that the Kavango East region had run out of seed. He managed to procure seeds from Zambezi and Omusati in December.
As the crops were growing, they were hit by heavy rains.
“We won’t get anything out. The investment is lost,” he said.
A cost breakdown includes the purchase of an N$436 993 John Deere tractor, a disc harrow costing N$40 857 and a ripper worth N$32 594.
He indicated that for the 2018/2019 season about N$271 100 was spent on clearing the field using manual labour and machines.
He further indicated that about 277 people were employed throughout the process.
‘Kavangos are not lazy’
Wakudumo said the objective of embarking on producing on a large scale and investing about N$919 775 was to contribute to food security and employ hundreds of people from the surrounding communities.
He stressed that it is often said that Kavango has fertile soil and water in abundance, but it remains known as a poor region.
According to him, this is not because people are lazy but because they are not supported by financial institutions and the government.
“Kavango is regarded as the poorest, so we have the river, we have the land but people are always criticising that Kavango people are lazy and we are not working but there are those who are trying. The idea was to show government that we are trying and can they meet us halfway,” Wakudumo said.
When asked what kind of assistance they required, Wakudumo said they want the agriculture ministry to visit subsistence farmers who are working large farms and support them by arranging loans from financial institutions.