Mnangagwa pleads with banks over farmers
By Letwin Nyambayo
President Emmerson Mnangagwa has urged banks and the private sector to fully support farmers who are struggling because of the prevailing economic situation in the country.
Responding to a plea from an Agribank official who pleaded that government should support wheat farmers who still have unharvested crops due to financial constraints, Mnangagwa said the burden should not only be thrown at them but bankers and the private sector should also support farmers at every stage.
“I am very pleased that as a banker you see the fact that the wheat farmers have no drying facilities but you should also be able to address the challenge.
“Why don’t you support the farmer with capacity to dry the winter crop so that they can migrate to summer on time, why limit yourself to financing the farmer,” he said.
He said since banks are interested in seeing farmers succeed so that they repay loans, they should help them go past all the challenges.
He added that bankers should think outside the box and the view that government must do everything must stop.
“Before you say government, look at yourself and ask yourself what you can do to deal with the challenge.
“We are doing our best through our cooperation with Spain where we are getting equipment to assist the farmer to cross from one season to the other,” Mnangagwa said.
He said all sectors of the economy should work together to make every year more productive than the previous, adding that farming is business and business is a private sector challenge.
“Under the new dispensation, we are saying government, the public sector and the private sector should come together and combine their efforts. We should do our best to provide capacity for people engaged in economy to do better,” he said.
Mngangawa said if the burden is thrown at government alone, there will be need to increase taxes.
Most farmers depend on bank loans to fund their agricultural activities.
However, some farmers in the country have over the years failed to repay their loans due to bad harvests as they lacked the necessary support to go through all farming stages. Daily News.