Remarks by board member: The President Award Ceremony 2012, Tanzania

Salutations

  • The President of Tanzania, His Excellency, Dr Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete
  • The Minister of Agriculture, Food and Cooperatives – Hon Eng. Christopher Kajoro Chiza
  • Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Cooperatives
  • FANRPAN Board of Governors
  • FANRPAN CEO, Dr Lindiwe Majele Sibanda
  • FANRPAN country nodes hosting institutions
  • Media representatives
  • Distinguished guests
  • Ladies and gentlemen
  • All protocols observed

At FANRPAN we believe in recognising African Agriculture Success Stories on home soil. On behalf of the FANRPAN Board of Governors and the network members, I would like to welcome you all to this year’s FANRPAN Award Ceremony.

The FANRPAN Awards havebecome not only an important calendar event on the network’s calendar but they are now the ultimate recognition for agriculture excellence in Africa. Feedback from our network members and partners testifies to thepride and excitement that this event brings, not only to the host country but in Africa as a whole.

The FANRPAN Board of Governors took the decision in 2007 to recognise and reward success stories in Africa in order for these to be scaled up in Africa and beyond. It is for this same reason that we are gathered here today, to say to our fellow Tanzanians– Well Done.

When the FANRPAN Annual General Meeting in Swaziland last year took the decision that Tanzania (the Economic and Social Research Foundation - ESRF) will be the host for this year’s regional policy dialogue, our hearts and minds started racing as we were visualising some of the events that take place pre and during the dialogue.

One thing I must say is that when it comes to the awards, we knew we would not be searching in the dark for success stories.Tanzania's agriculture landscape made our work pretty easy, with:

  • First, we have noted that his Excellency, as the president of the republic, is hands on in agriculture. For the past three years His Excellency has been leading KILIMO KWANZA, the Agriculture Development Programme.
  • Second, the media has done an excellentjob of covering on Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources issues. This should serve as an inspiration to our journalists that have been participating in the training workshop which started on Sunday.
  • Thirdly, thecivil society in Tanzanian has not been seating idly when it comes to driving the development of the agriculture sector and ensuring food security for all Tanzanians.
  • Lastly, the country has young people who have shown us that, agriculture does not have to be a profession for the elderly or the poor.

Tanzania presents quite an exemplary setting in the region and continent with its public private partnerships in agriculture development and investment being highly commendable and bearing tangible results.

Ladies and Gentleman, let me tell you that I am a practicing farmer engaged in crop and animal production. I have served as a President of a World Farmers Federation; and as the founder President of the Southern African Confederation of Agriculture Unions (SACAU) – An SADC regional Farmers Union. Being involved in organised agriculture, and on behalf of other farmers for 28 years, I appreciate Farmer-Centred Policies.

Your Excellency, farmer centred policies are policies that addresses the need of farmers; from small holder farmer to a commercial farmer. These are policies that look at challenges affecting famers throughout the entire value chain. It should look at issues relating to the land that they are farming on (for example land and water quality); inputs and support service that farmers require for production, and market related issues. A good policy proposes interventions that are timely and relevant; and your KILIMO KWANZA programme is commendable and there are popular and scholarly publications that testify to its success. You have your honour, introduced a timely and relevant programme.

Your Excellency, I believe that the Award challenges that Dr Lindiwe Majele Sibanda, FANRPAN CEO and Head of Mission, will be appropriate as they are building on the good work you are already doing. Lastly, I must say, there is a lot to learn about Tanzanian agriculture and thedelivery models used in this country. I have no doubt that each of our conference participants will take something home fromthe Tanzania experience of farmer-cantered policies.

Date: 
September, 2012
Category: 
Conference outputs