Land Reform minister and MEC check uMsinga food project progress

2010-04-27 00:00

RURAL Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwithi visited the uMsinga area yesterday to assess the progress of the Comprehensive Rural Development Programme (CRDP).

Theprogramme is intended to transform rural areas and enhance household food security by encouraging rural dwellers in South Africa to grow food in the own yards.

Nkwithi and KwaZulu-Natal Agriculture, Environmental Affairs and Rural Development MEC Lydia Johnson visited many disadvantaged families who had been identified for the project.

Their visit comes barely a week after the parliamentary oversight committee on rural development visited the area to ensure that the pilot programmes the department has reported on in Parliament were active.

During the visit, they brought food parcels for the immediate use of the families and agriculture starter packages to encourage them to start growing their own food.

They also assisted people in the community who do not have birth certificates, which prevents them from accessing government grants.

Among those who were visited was Suselaphi Mdlalose, who is an orphan and cares for a sibling and her own child.

She was helped to obtain a birth certificate for her child so that she can apply for government grants.

The minister instructed the local authorities to employ Mdlalose under the programme for the next five years so that she can assist her family.

Mdlalose said the opportunities provided by the project will help alleviate her difficult family situation.

“We do not have anyone looking after us and this chance will help us have our own money,” she added.

Johnson said the success of projects such as the CRDP depends on co-ordination with other government departments, as communities in financial difficultry need numerous government services.

“This is about the working together with all government departments to ensure the success of this project and to fight poverty in the province of KwaZulu-Natal,” she said.

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