Farirai Machivenyika Senior Reporter
Under fire Zanu-PF political commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere has joined Professor Jonathan Moyo in the anti-Command Agriculture crusade after he deliberately failed to acknowledge its success in a posting on his Twitter account.
Cde Kasukuwere is currently facing charges of plotting to topple President Mugabe by setting up parallel structures, fanning factionalism in provinces and abuse of office among others.
Said Cde Kasukuwere in his Twitter post on Saturday: “Bumper harvest ~ Presidential Input Support. Rural farmers, a combination of good rains & tractive power ~ it’s good.”
He, however, did not include Command Agriculture in his post despite its widely acknowledged success.
Cde Kasukuwere switched off his phone when reached for comment yesterday.
Cde Kasukuwere, Prof Moyo and Cde Patrick Zhuwawo have been at the forefront of criticising Command Agriculture, also known as the Specialised Maize Production and Import Substitution Programme, despite it being a Government- sanctioned programme.
Cde Kasukuwere had votes of no confidence passed against him by nine of 10 Zanu PF provinces for his attempts to unseat the President.
Command Agriculture is the brainchild of the First Lady Amai Mugabe, who is also Zanu-PF’s Secretary for Women’s Affairs and its implementation is being spearheaded by Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa following its adoption by Cabinet.
President Mugabe described Command Agriculture as “a beautiful programme” while addressing Zanu-PF supporters at Mucheke Stadium Open Arena during the third leg of his ongoing countrywide Presidential Youth Interface Rallies.
He also said that those that do not subscribe to Government programmes were free to leave.
Government adopted the Command Agriculture initiative to ensure food security.
The GMB has also paid $25 million to farmers who have delivered their maize to the national granary.
The final Government-sponsored crop and livestock assessment report says Zimbabwe is expecting to harvest 4 million tonnes of food crops from the 2016-17 agricultural season.
This means the country will have a surplus of one million tonnes of food crops.
The food crops include maize, sorghum, millet, roundnuts, groundnuts, sweet potatoes, Irish potatoes, cowpeas, squash, sugarbeans and pumpkins.
The expected maize production will exceed 2 155 000 tonnes, which is an increase of 321 percent from the 800 000 tonnes harvested during the 2015-16 agricultural season.
In adding small grains, the expected production will be more than 2,5 million tonnes against human consumption requirement per year of 1,5 million tonnes.
At least 1 300 tonnes of small grains had also been delivered.