Ivan Zhakata in SIAKOBVU
GOVERNMENT is set to eliminate tsetse flies in settled areas by 2024 in line with the National Development Strategy (NDS1).
Addressing journalists during a Tsetse media tour, director in the Tsetse Control Department, Dr William Shereni said they were making endless efforts to make sure that all farming and settled areas across the country were tsetse free.
“This is elimination from the farming and settled areas. We have 4 500 square kilometres within the farming and settled areas and by 2023 we will have deployed targets in that whole area.
“We have started this year to do 3000 square kilometres and are left with 1 500 which we will start working on at the beginning of next year. By the end of the year we expect that all the farming areas will be free of tsetse flies,” he said.
Dr Shereni said the elimination of tsetse flies was a success story for the Second Republic in the sense that farmers can freely do their farming without the constraints of treating animals with drugs.
He said there were still tsetse flies in national parks occupying about 25 000 square kilometres in the country.
Dr Shereni said they were going to institute target barriers from the cleared areas to make sure that there won’t be a return of tsetse flies in those areas.
“We are going to put target barriers in strategic areas to stop the flies or at the edge of the flight belt so that the files do not move from the settled and farming areas,” he said.
“The farmers will now start to keep animals because the presence of tsetse flies impacts animal productivity. Milk production is reduced among other things.
“Our farmers can now plough on more areas where they can grow more crops, produce more crops and have more milk and meat. It is going to be of such a huge benefit to the farmer.”