June 19, 2024


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Meet Mrs. Nizeyimana who departed from public service to seeds multiplication

Mrs. Nizeyimana Antoinette sharing her testimony

TAN Reporter

Agriculture plays a crucial role in fostering economic development and societal wellbeing in Rwanda. The agriculture sector not only serves as the backbone of the country’s economy but also contributes significantly to poverty reduction and food security.

That is why Mrs. Nizeyimana left her old job as a social worker in a health center to embark on a new career of seeds multiplication, specifically Irish potatoes.

Currently, Nizeyimana’s works are based in Nyamagabe District, Kitabi Sector. Her new profession started in 2007.

In her inspiring testimony she shared to farmers from Gicumbi district, on January 30, during their study tour at the RAB Station in Kitabi Sector, Nyamagabe District, Mrs. Nizeyimana said that she decided to become a seed multiplier after realizing that agriculture sector was improving and growing.

“I’m a social worker by formation. I was working at the Health Centre but I decided to quit in order to follow up my new potential career of seeds multiplication,” she said.

She highlighted that she started with a loan of Rwf2 million. However, she can now afford Rwf50,000,000 loan and disburse it as normal. She is working on at least 31 hectares and she is about to harvest at least 230 metric tonnes of Kuruza and Kinigi varieties.

In terms of capital, Rwf9 million can be invested on one hectare and yield between Rwf10 million and Rwf12 million, Nizeyimana has explained, insisting that agriculture is a profitable profession when it is done professionally.

They learnt some practices that include how to prepare good seeds

“The problem is that people often think like farming has little value but such mindset should be changed because when you committed like in other professions, you make good money”, She insisted.

“Another positive side is that when it comes to taxes, there is an amount of money farmers are exonerated. For example, when you earn like Rwf30 million, you pay taxes for only Rwf18 million. I don’t know any other business you can do and be exempted from such money. As people who want to become professional farmers, you have to be courageous, use good seeds and a good amount of money.”

According to Bahesherwa Jean de la Croix, the agronomist in charge of food crops in Green Gicumbi Project, the reason behind taking farmers to visit their colleagues of Nyamagabe District was to help them learn from one another.

Some of the farmers from Gicumbi District who participated in the study tour in Nyamagabe District

“There is a problem with good seeds across the country, especially those of Irish potatoes. Now as our farmers have learnt different technics of preparing seeds from their colleagues and Kitabi RAB Station, they will apply them in their district.”

Mutuyimana Peninah, one of the farmers said they got new skills that will help improve their farming activities.

She said: “We didn’t know much about crops rotation, even how to prepare effective manure that can improve soil health and fertility. We were engaged in agriculture for food security but we have learnt how we can also multiply seeds on our own. It is going to help us find good seeds needed on the market because mainly in our region, the shortage of seeds used to be a problem.”

This field visit was organized in line with Farmer Field School, an initiative under Green Gicumbi Project, implemented by The National Fund for Environment-FONERWA.

Farmers said that they are ready to apply the skills they have learnt from their colleagues

The project focuses on reducing vulnerability to climate change by enhancing the adaptive capacity of the targeted groups in the project intervention area as well as reducing their exposure to climate risks.

The project intervention area covers nine Sectors which are Rubaya, Cyumba, Kaniga, Mukarange, Rushaki, Shangasha, Manyagiro, Byumba and Bwisige.

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