Swayimane small scale growers recently gathered at the Imbizo at Nongco Community Hall in celebration of the advancement of the second tranch of funding from the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform (DRDLR). The funding is part of the total of R9 million approved and partially advanced by the Department in 2015 towards sugarcane development in the rea. In this second tranch, Siphapheme Co-operative received R1,700,000 while Inzwakele got R800,000 thousand. When receiving the funds the Chairman of the South African Farmers development Association (SAFDA) Noodsberg Mill Area Committee (MAC) and also Chairman of Siphapheme Cooperative, Muziwemali Thusi said: “As a result of the earlier intervention by the Department, production increased

from 16000 tons to 60000 tons per harvesting season.” The traditional leader of the community, Inkosi Gcumisa applauded the Department for assisting his community, while appealing to the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform to make land available to the people, as what is available in communal land isn’t enough. Similar sentiments were shared by Counsellor Gasa of Ward 8, who pledged political leadership support for initiatives which seeks to help in the upliftment of the community of Swayimane. According to the business plan, the funds will be used towards cane development, which will include purchasing of inputs, implements and building of the sherd on the site, which has already been made available by Umshwati Local Municipality.

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