THE government has launched an exercise to supply free agricultural inputs to cashew farmers across the country.
The initiative comes after President Samia Suluhu Hassan endorsed 61bn/- to purchase cashew inputs as incentives to farmers in cashew producing regions to improve production of the crop.
At the launching event, Mtwara Regional Commissioner Brigadier General Marco Gaguti said a total of 25,000 tonnes of sulphur and 1.5 million litres of liquid inputs have been purchased.
“The farm inputs would be supplied for free to cashew nuts farmers in the country as per President’s directives,” he said, thanking President Samia for walking her talk to support farmers improve cashew production.
The RC called on all the parties involved, including the government officials in the regions, districts, wards and villages to closely monitor and oversee the supply process to ensure farmers receive the inputs on time and according to the required amounts.
He asked the cashew cooperative unions to exercise honesty and transparency in the process of applying the inputs by showing the exact amount to be issued to each farmer and number of farmers ought to receive the inputs.
“The cooperative unions should first send the list of farmers to receive the inputs and the exact amount each and every farmer will receive,” he said and warned the cooperative unions against interfering with the distribution process.
On the other hand, Brig Gen Gaguti asked the farmers to be vigilant when receiving the inputs in order to avoid unnecessary inconveniences that may occur.
“I call upon farmers to make sure they are given a distribution voucher before they receive the inputs, out of that they should not receive the inputs,” he said.
Chairman of the Cashew Board of Tanzania (CBT) Brigadier General (rtd) Aloyce Mwanjile said a total of 1336 out of 25,000 purchased tonnes of sulphur and 85 per cent of liquid inputs have been received in the warehouses.
He said CBT formed a committee to monitor and oversee the whole process of receiving and distributing the inputs to farmers as planned.
He vowed stern measures against any cooperative unions and officials who would be involved in distribution fraud. He said the inputs have got a special logo and batch numbers insisting on the need for all the parties involved in the distribution process to exercise honesty and transparency in the whole process.