Director General of Agriculture Development of Rwanda visits WorldVeg
The time is right to provide new seeds, technical know-how and scalable interventions for the people of Rwanda.
On 14 June 2018, Dr. Charles Murekezi, Director General of Agriculture Development of Rwanda, was treated to an extended tour of the WorldVeg Eastern and Southern Africa regional office in Arusha, Tanzania. Tsvetelina Stoilova introduced Dr. Murekezi to the regional genebank, a treasure trove of traditional vegetables, and Fekadu Dinssa discussed the great impact breeding has had in the region. Thibault Nordey impressed Dr. Murekezi with an overview of the many technologies and insights to make protected cultivation a reality for smallholder farmers in East Africa. “I wasn’t aware grafted tomato plants can have such an impact,” Dr. Murekezi said, after seeing the seedling healing chambers and learning more about WorldVeg’s ongoing research in grafting technology. At WorldVeg’s vegetable business hub, Justus Ochieng described a model to turn unemployed youth into vegetable entrepreneurs.
Dr. Murekezi visited the regional office to set out a roadmap for a WorldVeg fact-finding mission in Rwanda, where horticulture is seen as a key sector for agricultural development in the country, both for nutritional outcomes as well as income generation. WorldVeg has been very active in Rwanda in the past, especially under the GIZ-funded ProNiva project and the Bill and Melinda Gates-funded vBSS project. The time is right to provide new seeds, technical know-how and scalable interventions for the people of Rwanda.
Story: Thomas Dubois Photos: Hassan Mndiga