THE Batoka Livestock Development Centre in Choma will require a total investment of K20, 622, 000 over a period of five years to actualise its vision and mission.
Southern Province Agricultural Planner Evans NKHOMA says the centre’s mission to generate a safe, sustainable, and environmentally-friendly technologies from adaptive research will be accelerated.
Mr. NKHOMA who is also a consultant in formulating a Strategic plan for the Batoka Livestock Development Centre (BLDC) noted that the centre will intensify value chains in crops, fish, livestock and livestock production systems to be self-sustainable.
He was speaking during a one day dissemination of the Draft Strategic Plan of the BLDC to Senior Agricultural Officers in the ministries of Agriculture, Fisheries and Livestock in Choma.
He explained that the BLDC will also produce high quality livestock and livestock products for sale in commercial quantities locally, nationally and internationally.
Mr. NKHOMA further clarified that the centre has designed its Strategic Plan in a manner that will at the same time address its own aim of enhancing Fisheries and Livestock Research in a Sustainable manner.
He stated that the vision of the centre is to become a competitive and self-sustaining livestock development and research Centre in Zambia supplying improved fisheries and livestock technologies.
Mr. NKHOMA noted that other areas to be included at the centre include commercial production of livestock, fish and their products as well as pasture seed and fodder to stakeholders while contributing significantly to economic development.
He asserted that to realise the vision the strategic plan has identified two strategic issues of focus and their related strategic results that include enhancement of Livestock research resulting into innovative, efficient and effective research activities.
Mr. NKHOMA pointed out that the second strategic issue of focus is Commercialization for Self-Sustenance resulting into enhanced income generation and sustainability.
Meanwhile, authorities in the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock in Southern Province have commenced a process of making special strides to revitalise the Batoka Livestock Development Centre as a centre of excellence for livestock breeding.
Southern Province Fisheries and Livestock Coordinator Charles Lwanga said Batoka Livestock Development Centre (BLDC) will also be revived to create employment mostly among the youths.
Mr. Lwanga was speaking when he officially opened a dissemination of the draft strategic plan of BLDC in Choma.
He clarified that issues of Climate change, youth unemployment, and globalisation should not be treated separately as his ministry endeavours to resuscitate the Centre.
Mr. Lwanga said BLDC formally Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust, Batoka has undergone turbulences and setbacks over the past years hence the need to reinvigorate the centre if it has to contribute positively towards the Agriculture sector and economic development.
And Provincial Planning Unit Assistant Director Justine Kapenda expressed happiness for developing what he termed a home grown strategic plan for the Centre.
Mr. Kapenda noted that the centre should not only carryout livestock breeding but also engage in marketing of agriculture produce and livestock products. ENDS/LK/NAIS/Choma