MAPHUMULO mayor, Happy Ngcobo, handed over a tunnel farm worth R7,5 million on Tuesday, 12 July, at Mambedwini area, Ward 9.The handover was attended by the ward councillor who is also the deputy mayor, Mr. M.P. Mbonambi, Inkosi B.C. Khuzwayo and local headmen.The facility was built because the municipality believes it will contribute significantly towards poverty alleviation and empowering the community."Maphumulo has fertile land that people can rely on and use to generate an income and feed families," said Ngcobo.She said the municipality will support the community to ensure the facility is sustainable, adding that iLembe Enterprise will also support it.Ngcobo encouraged the community to register co-operatives in order for them to supply supermarket chains. The tunnel was built by Asande Projects, which took three years to complete, and employed 20 local construction workers. The tunnel has state-of-the-art equipment which includes water pumps that supply the 19 tunnels and a cold room that will be used to store the produce.She said the four trainees recruited to work on the facility were picked from the community and were trained on how to use the tunnel’s equipment. Ngcobo said the community works programme members will be responsible for ensuring it is cleaned regularly.Mbonambi thanked the community for ensuring that building of the tunnel was successful and asked the community to ensure that the facility is not vandalised.Traditional leaders thanked the mayor and her deputy for the farm.