South Sudan's Morobo county launches agriculture vocational center
March 18, 2016 (MOROBO) – A multi-purpose agricultural farmers’ vocational training centre has been launched in South Sudan’s Morobo county of Yei River state on Friday, with government officials and farmers commending the project as a tool to improving productivity in the area.
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The facility is aimed at improving crop production, education, sanitation, health and environmental management skills. The project is funded by an Italian international group for technical cooperation with developing countries (ACAV).
The organization’s South Sudan program manager, Pierluigi Florretta, said the project will support more than 200 farmer cooperative groups in Morobo and Yei River Counties, adding the centre will also help in building the capacity of youth to towards fighting dependency syndrome.
“What you have in front here is a working progress in order to establish a vocational school, the vocational school which has been a need is going to be a centre for training youth and giving them opportunity to come out [of] poverty and start a job,” Florretta said.
However Taban Samuel, a farmers’ representative, called on the organization to introduce poultry, fishery and bee keeping to the farmers in the area.
“We are hoping that poultry keeping be introduced for us to reduce importation of chicken from somewhere. If there could be fishing, then we could produce and people consume from here. Thirdly if bee keeping is brought nearer then it will take root very well,” Samuel suggested.
Meanwhile, Yei River state agriculture minister, Huda Michael Laila, appreciated the Italian government in supporting human resource development in the state and South Sudan at large. She said no need for South Sudanese to go to Uganda in search of vocational studies.
“We are going to stand with this facility and our partners together so that this vocational centre train our youth, women and men so that that at the end of the day we shall not send our children to Uganda because we now have a vocational centre,” she explained.
On his part, Morobo county commissioner, Toti Jacob, added that the facility will assist the Government and the community to train drop out students in the area, revealing the county has planned to expand areas of crop production to more than 30 hectors of land this year.
“In my work plan for this year, I have planned to cultivate 30 square of land so that we can push out what we call hunger in the region. I believe with the presence of this facility in my area, it will help to improve farmer’s skills as well as instilling new skills to the drop out students in the area,” said commissioner Jacob.
The Italian regional minister for research and university, youth policy and development cooperation, Sara Ferrari, on the other hand has asked the government of South Sudan to prioritize human resource and agricultural development as key sectors for economic growth.
“South Sudan is rich and blessed with natural resources and human resources, it’s time for the government and the people to sit down and think ways forward towards developing [the] country. We as donors are ready to support developing countries in all areas of development,” she said.