By: Rodney Pienaar
The Cabinet has endorsed the 2019/2020 comprehensive drought intervention fund amounting to N$572 700 000 at the 4th Cabinet decision making meeting that took place on Tuesday.
The proposed drought relief intervention was submitted by the agriculture minister early this year.
“The amount will cover matters relating to drought such as food assistance, water tankers, livestock management incentive, transport subsidies to and from grazing areas and transports for fodder. It will also be a subsidy for crop farmers to get their crop in order for food security. Lick supplements will also be bought for lock herd with this funds,” information minister Stanley Simataa said at a press briefing this week.
Cabinet has asked ministries and government agencies such as the ministry of defense and the ministry of health to avail facilities and support the implementation of drought relief interventions.
“Cabinet has directed all the funds towards the drought relief interventions be challenged through the National Disaster Funds,” said the minister.
Meanwhile, farmers severely hit by the ongoing drought which they say is now a national disaster have set an ambitious target to collect funds to the tune of N$10 million by the end March this year in order to help mitigate the crisis.
They have taken the lead ahead of an anticipated government relief fund, but have also joined hands with the ministry of agriculture. Minister Alpheus Naruseb is the custodian of the initiative dubbed the Dare to Care Fund.
Furthermore, a total number of 595 839 beneficiaries received drought relief assistance through the Office of the Prime Minister’s directorate of disaster risk management in 2017.