Photo by: Nompumelelo Duma
The COVID -19 application interventions announced by the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Thoko Didiza, closed with 42 444 application forms were received.
“It is pleasing also to note that eight provinces achieved a 100% return rate. These are Northern Cape, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng, Eastern Cape, North West and Free State,” said Minister Didiza.
Various districts are set to consider over the applications and begin the process of shortlisting successful applicants.
Successful applicants/farmers are expected to receive vouchers, which will be used to collect inputs from various retailers and wholesalers.
“Minister Didiza wishes to remind farmers that inputs will be capped at R50 000 per farmer” said departmental spokesperson Reggie Ngcobo.
According to the department, it encouraged farmers that did not qualify not to despair as another around of support package will be announced.
Qualifying farmers included those specialising in poultry (day-old chicks, point of lay chickens, feed, medication and sawdust), vegetables (seedlings, fertilisers, pesticides, herbicides and soil correction), fruits (final spraying programmes for fruits that are ready for harvest), livestock (feed and vaccines) and winter field crops (soil correction, fertilisers, seeds, herbicides and pesticides).
“I would like to thank provincial MECs, Mayors and officials who have worked tirelessly to amplify the message after the announcement of this intervention and we are fully aware that owing to lockdown challenges many famers could not apply,” said Minister Didiza.
Farmer associations supported the intervention but cautioned for the department to award vouchers to deserving farmers and destitute.