Ten thousand farmers in Northern Ghana to benefit from N2 Africa Project

About 10 000 farmers from six districts of the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions of Ghana will benefit from a project known as the N2 Africa Project by the end of the year. The project, which would run until 2013, seeks to introduce farmers to newly improved soya bean, cowpea and groundnut seeds, rhizobuim inoculants and chemical fertilisers such as Triple Super Phosphate (TSP) and Muriate of Potash to promote legume production. The project is being financed by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. To achieve the targets, it is important to strengthen partnerships among farmers associations, government, research institutions and others.Read more here.
Ghana News Agency


Further funding for African agricultural technology

Kenya on Monday called on African, Caribbean and Pacific States ( ACP ) member countries to put more funds on agricultural and technology development to help make it marketable. Agriculture Permanent Secretary Romano Kiome told delegates attending a Eastern and Southern Africa agricultural meeting in Nairobi that they must put emphasis on inputs, markets, credit and institutions if agriculture is to become profitable in the continent. Nevertheless, regional bodies like Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA) are needed to lead the region in coming up with a policy on how countries can resort to growing one variety of crop to sustain the economy rather than concentrate in all that do not bring income to the countries. Read more here.
Peter Mutai and David Musyoka, Xinhua

Trends and outlook report on key agriculture and rural development indicators in Tanzania

The government of Tanzania is implementing an Agricultural Sector Development Programme. Its objective is to increase productivity, profitability and farm incomes by improving farmers’ use of and access to agricultural knowledge, technologies, marketing systems and infrastructure. The share of agricultural sector to GDP and export has declined in the past 10 years. An assessment of the linkages between agricultural investment, growth, and poverty and hunger reduction in the past decade reveals that there is an apparent disconnect between the observed growth and poverty and food security outcomes in Tanzania. Read more here.

Diversification of regional economy defended

The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) has appealed to its member states to do more to diversify their economies, emphasising agriculture as a means for improving food-producing capacity. It said the focus on agriculture should go together with the development of an internal transport network linking agriculture production zones and consumer markets. Each country should consider agriculture as an important sustainable source for their economies. Read more here.

Idasa responds to Land Bank announcement

The Public Expenditure and Smallholder Agriculture Project in African democracy institute, Idasa, has welcomed the Land Bank’s commitment to spend 1 billion rands on emerging farmers in the next two years as a move to unlock the long-term potential growth of agriculture as one of the pillars of South Africa’s economic development. Please read attached press release for more information. Read more here.

The Professor Robert Shell Lunch Time Talk at IDASA

Today’s Lunchtime Soapbox talk at Idasa’s Democracy Centre, 6 Spin Street (across from Church Square) will be a special session with noted South African historian Robert Shell.

He will speak about the Old Slave Lodge in Cape Town, which housed up to 1000 slaves.Slave-lodgings, lunatic asylum, police station, prison and brothel: these were some of the functions which the building at the entrance to the Company’s Gardens at the top of Adderley Street (the old Heerengracht), unashamedly fulfilled. The Lodge fused the dramatic themes of thraldom, perpetual servitude, sex and insanity into a fortress of misery which could provide South African novelists with the raw material of a hundred novels. This complex building was a forgotten crucible of colonialism and apartheid that helped perpetuate facets of colonial life which are still recognisable in present-day South Africa.

Robert Shell is extraordinary Professor of Historical Demography in the Statistics Department at the University of the Western Cape. His research interests cover slavery, Islam and also HIV/AIDS.

Date: 7 July 2011
Time: 12:30 for 1:00pm.

Prof. Shell’s talk will start at 1pm and go through 2:30pm

This is a special presentation with an extended Question & Answer session.

As always for these talks, a delicious “brown bag” lunch for R35 is available from the restaurant, 6 Spin Street.