Govt clears air on Command expenses •Only $190m, not $500m used: Made •Prof Moyo’s claims trashed

Dr Made

Dr Made

Felex Share Senior Reporter—
Government used only $190 million under the Command Agriculture Programme, contrary to claims by Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo that $500 million went towards the scheme. Statistics from the Office of the President and Cabinet show that from the $190 million, $30 million went to the Presidential Inputs Support Scheme. The revelation comes as Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister Dr Joseph Made yesterday said the two programmes “have done well”.

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As a result, the minister said, Government had stopped placing orders for maize imports as a good harvest was on the cards. Prof Moyo has been using social media to lampoon the Command Agriculture Programme, a brainchild of President Mugabe.

The project seeks to cut on maize imports and boost food security. Prof Moyo has been using his Twitter handle @ProfJNMoyo, to attack the programme being coordinated by the Office of the President and Cabinet.

VP Mnangagwa

VP Mnangagwa

President Mugabe appointed Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa chairperson of the Cabinet committee on food security and nutrition, to oversee the implementation of the scheme. In one of his tweets, Prof Moyo insinuated that part of the money used under Command Agriculture was missing.

He wrote: “Better listen to agro-economists on how $500 (million) was commandeered to plant maize on just 153,102.60ha when the $500 (million) was meant for 400 000ha!” Dr Made said the two programmes were a success.

“All combined, these programmes have done well,” he said.


“This season, there is food at household level, and we expect small-holder farmers to sell any surplus. As Government, already we have stopped placing new orders for maize imports. What is coming in is just maize from those contracts we had committed to.”

He said the only limiting factor to the two programmes was top dressing fertiliser but the Presidential Inputs Scheme was better with the support it got from China.

“The special maize programme (Command Agriculture) has contributed to building up the capacity of extension staff, all departments,” Dr Made said.

“I want to see more resources put towards strengthening the extension so that we improve the mobility of the staff.”

On expected yields, Dr Made said actual projections would come after the second crop and livestock assessment.

“We are now working on the second round and, it is then that we will project what is likely to come but surely, when you take the maize, sorghum, millet and finger millet, we are anticipating that maize alone which is currently standing at 1,8 million (tonnes) will be slightly above that in terms of the yield.

“When you add small yields, our projection will be at 2,5 million (tonnes). Of that figure, everything produced under special maize programme will be delivered to GMB.”

Dr Made said much caution was needed on harvesting and storage of the produce “to avoid spoiling everything at the last minute.”

Statistics availed to The Herald showed that $160 million was used to plant 166 000 hectares of maize, while $30 million went to the Presidential Input Scheme after Government had pleaded with the funders for support. About 191 000 hectares of land were tilled with 166 000 being planted.

Funders of the Command Agriculture programme poured in $190 million targeting to plant 220 00 hectares of maize.

On the $160 million used for Command Agriculture, $85 million went towards irrigated land and $75 million was used on non-irrigated land.

A source from the Office of the President and Cabinet yesterday said the expected bumper harvest would stimulate economic growth.

“Anyone talking about $500 million is a candidate for Ingutsheni,” said the source.

“We cannot continue to argue with someone possessed with opposition demons as has been alluded by others before.”

Added the source: “The reason why the programmes are a success is because last year, Government made foreign payments of more than $250 million to import about 700 000 tonnes of maize, but the only foreign payments made on Command Agriculture was the $90 million used to bring in fertilizers and chemicals.

“The rest of the money circulated locally and industry activity was boosted with companies like Seed-co selling more than 22 000 tonnes of seed maize and being paid here. Secondly, the interest rates that the Command Agriculture farmers are paying are pegged at four percent against the 22 percent offered by banks.

“Most of the farmers were reeling in debt and losing property. Expected average yields per hectare would be about $1,400 based on the support price of $390 Government has already announced. Many farmers will be able to settle their debts.”

Private grain millers also imported about 400 000 tonnes of maize from Mexico, Ukraine and Zambia to complement Government efforts in 2016.

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  • Chief Ngungumbane

    What sort of blackmail technique has the Prof applied to be able to get away with murder. Certainly, it appears the Prof has something that the President really cannot do without to be allowed to mess around as is currently happening. Action is long overdue.

  • chivei

    According to the Heraral it is $500m

  • kk

    Using 160 million to plant 166000 hectares boils down to a cost of US963,8 per hectare. It costs US100 to till 1 hectare, that’s the upper limit! Can someone now explain to me how a single hectare can take in a further whopping US863,80? Cdes let’s get serious when running the affairs of the state!

  • Kuta Kinte

    A member of the politburo is not supposed to tweet such information especially before some thorough verification with other fellow members of the same grouping. The way he tweeted and argued his case shows the message he wanted to broadcast. It is very regrettable.

  • kk

    Even the figures they want us to believe, the watered-down figures, are still showing us money was stolen big time! It’s elementary mathematics!

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    Remember that some financing pledges may fail to materialize for any reasons such as systemic risks on our financial sector. A bank may pledge but finds itself solvent but not liquid to pass on the funds to government as promised. Some budgets may be based on floating treasury bills but targeted financial institutions fail to take up the floated amount. The underwriter may not be liquid , and this leads to missed budget,especially in our current economic situation bedeviled by economic sanctions imposed by the evil West and supported by your sellout MDCT. I am one of the hard working farmers growing soya/sugar beans and maize on my small A1 farm . I have never stolen in my life ,let alone government funds. I have never worked in government or quasi government institution. So your insinuation is offside and rude! I will invite you one day to visit my plot in Goromonzi ,near Harare ,to see how productive I am. As a hardworking liberation hero I use my land to feed my family and meet some family expenses ,without barking against our government for social welfare benefits. I employ five full time workers and casual ones too. I agree with you that public funds should not be embezzled. But its too early to conclude that if less than $500ml target was not used in Command project ,the balance was stolen. Why are you refusing to join us celebrate the bumper harvest? Usasvotwe kuti ZANU PF government yati gonera gwendo gwuno,please. Kubva wavenga VP vedu kuti why is he spearheading the succeeding Command? Dont be misled by pig headed little Profs ,isu vana Prof Mzvinavhu tiripo kuti tiii! KKKKKKkkkiiii!

    • succuba

      …especially in our current economic situation bedeviled by economic sanctions imposed by the evil West … – (fakey)

      There you go again with your lies…. are you not embarrassed by your propensity to deceive?

      Have you got title deeds for your farm or can it be taken away from you if you stop singing slogans?

      • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

        If you dont have anything sane and useful to say, just keep out of the discussion please , you odiot.

        • succuba

          Well stop telling lies then…

          • rukudzo

            Sanctions affected Zimbabwe that is a fact not a lie…those who deny what is written in American statutes are both stupid and foolish.

          • yowe

            I think corruption and policy inconsistency affected us more….Do you know Iran and Libya were under more serious sanctions than us but they still managed considerable development???

        • Madara

          answer him….

          • mandevu

            yeh come on Prof tell us. You referred me to am article which you said explained it all. I read it and the article was clear in ts analysis that only 20% of the economic malaise of this country can be attributed to sanctions in some way. The rest is due to Zanu PF policy and abuses. You tried to tell me at the time that I took you out of context. So you explain otherwise you should keep your so-called revolutionary Zanu PF mouth closed

        • yowe

          Hatidi vanhu vanopererwa nekufunga kusvika pakuti chavanokwanisa kutaura chete kutuka vamwe….pindura mubvunzo apa nxaaa

  • Ruramai

    The 500m for Command Agriculture cant be diverted to Floods victims because 500m raised belongs to the Banks and other Private Companies who put the money together for the purpose of Command Agriculture and it is supposed to be paid back. Thats why all those who were give the Command Inputs was commanded to produce a certain Tonnes per hectare so that they pay for the inputs. Haibike mari yeCommand coz its involves the Banks weyeeeee its not like Zimdef saga. Apa bank kana rakapa mari eg 2million rinoda mari yaro at the end of the 2years with interest.

  • mpengo

    Well, now let’s be fair.

    This is Joseph Made we are talking about.

    The same guy who lied to the President and the country at some point about the state of our harvest…proclaiming that it would be a bumper harvest!

    The same Made who could’ve turned the resettlement programme into success but for 10 years presided over a crumbling state of agricultire and progressively declining harvest.

    Yes, it’s the same Joseph Made!

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    But dont also forget that some of the inputs could not be supplied, with some farmers nor getting AN fertilizer, as suppliers cried for forex to be able to manufacture,etc. That may explain the discrepancy between the budget and actual utilized. The main point is that let us not conclude that what was not utilized was misused. We must wait for reconciliation and audit. Lets us also accept that despite any hitches the bottom line is a better harvest than yester-years. Numerous reports by sundry reporters , given to half facts, may have misled the uninformed like Prof-Mo! Thanks for the debate anyway.


    ko iye msoro damba yake akaisep ye ZIMDEF ……… I WILL never listen to a traitor like JMoyo … he is good at degrading other people yet deep inside anenge achiziva chokwadi…….. remember ari ku S.A he used to criticize the government and president and he wrote books that portrayed Zanu as a failed gvt bt nw he is the one at the forefront worshiping hiz bosses to the extent of bootlicking!!!!!!!!! shame

  • Rigayi Ikonomi

    Felix Share you are a hypocrite. Are you not the one who wrote this article back in August 2016???? Hanzi “Prof Moyo’s claims trashed” You must be ashamed of yourself!!! Such a MF!

  • nathan

    today its Friday , correct

  • Rigayi Ikonomi
  • rukudzo

    That was a rallying point….mobilization.Dr Nkomo once said always think big so that kana zvikaramba, at least half ya big is reasonable.Estimates are estimates..the reality is coming….yes God smiled on us….it good too that at least there was the command agriculture which then help people to focus on fulfilling the command at hand…..This approach should be repeated this season.

  • The Lion

    I have an occasion to come into contact with the distribution of inputs. Papers got approved at the ministry with inputs collected from various inputs suppliers. The company involved in the funding of the program was actively involved in the distribution process particularly fuel. The agreements are between farmers and the financier, with government coming in as guarantor. Anyone interested in knowing the exact figure (journalists in particular) can trace inputs distributed and the value of such. It will be silly to think that the financier can all of a sudden approach government with imaginary defaulters to be paid USD310 million. USD10 million maybe but not that amount. Jonathan is just being naughty and a source of government dis-functionality. We should remember that only recently he sided with state universities that are busy squandering school fees on infrastructural projects when government had cut back on funding to these institutions.

  • Chitambo

    So we did not plant 400 00 Ha and therefore we cannot get 2Million tonnes from the Command scheme…

  • yowe

    Thats a lie hahahaha …. people lost their jobs due to investor scare tactics …due u remember the we will take 51% of your company mantra? Shall i continue with more reasons …

  • succuba

    Name one industry that suffered under “sanctions” and which sanction was the problem… lets discuss…

  • succuba

    ZB Bank is not under sanctions…. next?

  • rukudzo

    There is no proof there.