Thursday, April 25, 2024
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Maseru

Life-line for farmers

Business

Mohloai Mpesi

The Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) is getting close to burying the troubles of local farmers after it affirmed the market place at Ha Tikoe is close to operation.

Minister of Trade and Industry Thabiso Molapo recently visited the site for inspection and drew a conclusion that the firm has been completed with a few touch-ups to be made.

Molapo affirmed that the building which has been earmarked to accept fresh products such as; vegetables, tomatoes, onions et al, from the local farmers in a bid to sell to the big supermarkets will start operations as soon as May.

“Our purpose to be here today is to inspect this place that we are going to make our Market Center. We walked around the building and checked inside, we are happy to see that everything is finished and only a few touch-ups are needed to complete the building.

“At the beginning of May we have to start accepting products from the farmers, as you can remember that the government advised Basotho to dive deep into farming. It is another initiative to create jobs in the country,” he said adding that should the initiative swell, they will expand or erect another building.

“When the project continues and grows large, our plan is to expand or set-up a new building,” he said.

‘Yours is to plant those vergetables, tomatoes, cabbage etc, without any fear of where to sell them. You just bring them here and wait for your money,” he said.

The Corporation’s Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Theko Bereng echoed his mister’s sentiments, adding that the place would be under the monitoring of private but local people who will incur its operational costs.

He indicated that the place was first reserved to be used by one investor coming from outside the country, but the Corporation retracted from the thought and decided to use it for the said purpose.

“This firm belongs to LNDC, it was built for one of the investors to use. When Ministry of Trade and Industry had an idea to establish the food market to sell fresh produce, it was decided that this place will be suitable for the project.

“Farmers will bring their products here. There will be about 16 market agents which we have already prepared.

“Their task with me is to coordinate farmers with supermarkets that sell these kinds of products. When a farmer brings their products here, they should know that it is going to be purchased,” he said.

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