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ProAgri BNZ 02

The Botswana elections came and went without a stint of unrest. The Batswana should really be proud of the example they set to the rest of the continent. The BDP (Botswana Democratic Party) achieved a runaway victory, with two thirds of the seats in their pocket. This achievement, which was even bigger than in the previous election in 2014, caused a few eyebrows to lift and a few grumbles from the opposition, claiming election irregularities.

But with this huge majority behind him, Mr Mokgweetsi Masisi, who took over from Mr Ian Khama after he resigned in April last year, is definitely firmly in the seat for the next 5 years. President Masisi told his officials that they shouldn’t celebrate for too long, because there is hard work to do. There is indeed hard work to do, especially in the agricultural sector. The president did a splendid job with the reinstatement of big game hunting.

This decision offered breathing space and opportunities for our farmers who suffer from unimaginable destruction. But this was an easy dilemma to fix …

Southern Africa and especially Botswana is gripped in the most severe drought since we can remember. Luckily the UN is already planning an emergency strategy to save what can still be saved. The President already declared the country in a state of drought, but we have to ask him whether he is going to raise the UN one and ensure that our cripple industry will recover as soon as humanly possible.

And then the age old diamond question. Botswana is yearning to become independent from the volatile and potentially unsustainable diamond industry for many years. Agriculture is a very secure and highly important sector and has been earmarked as one of the main industries to grow into a safety net, but progress is slow. Maybe it is time for government to allow the private sector to take over and fully withdraw out of the meat export industry…

In this second edition of ProAgri BNZ, we take a look at the advanced irrigation equipment and technology from Agrico and Reinke and we learn from AGCO how to get maximum value and satisfaction out of this planting season.

For the farmers who wish to receive the magazine on WhatsApp, please WhatsApp your name, surname, country, main agricultural activity and e-mail address to +27(0)84-041-1722.

It will be less than 15 MB per issue.

Farm smartly!

Du Preez de Villiers- dupreez@proagri.co.za

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