Tanzanian President praises RIU poultry project
10 May 2011
This week RIU Tanzania
received the highest level endorsement possible when the President of Tanzania, Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete
, was interviewed by RIUtv
. He said how impressed he is with the poultry enterprise initiative developed and run by RIU Tanzania.
Vera Mugittu, head of RIU Tanzania, meets His Excellency Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, The President of the United Republic of Tanzania
The President said:
"Tell the DFID Minister that we attach a lot of value to this and we want this project to continue... It has been successful so far but we need to scale up so that it reaches more people. The people at the grassroots level who shoulder the burden of poverty: he has very little income - he needs to increase so he can take his children to school, he can eat better, he can have a better home and he can clothe himself and his family better.
So this is a programme that touches the very people that we have been spending a lot of our efforts in order to lift from poverty to prosperity...
I have personally been advocating to leaders, to grassroots leaders, to promote poultry keeping. But through RIU it is done much better: better organised, there is predictability - the farmers have assurance they will get the chicks, they will get the feeds, they will get the vaccines and medicines and they will get the market. So it is a project that we really need to continue and it needs to be supported.
It is my personal view we need to promote this programme. The Ministry of Livestock I visited a month ago. One of the things I told them to take seriously is poultry development at grassroots level.
We in government are responsible for making sure that the vaccines, drugs and medicines are available for care and treatment of chickens. But also we are doing research at livestock research institutes - they have a big contribution to develop the parent and breeder stock. I mean developing the breeder lines then you take these to the private sector to multiply them so the chicks are available... with support from DFID we can do this in a big way.
The way they are doing it, the concept that has gone into it, is much bigger than what I had actually thought... really they want to lift people out of poverty... They cannot continue to be small. You have to do it in big way in order to have an impact. The idea of starting with a minimum of 100 [birds], this is now what makes the difference. The preparation that goes into it, the training, the continued extension, work supervision.
I am so excited about this project because it has been in my mind for quite some time. I have been preaching it - the idea of poultry keeping as one important activity in our efforts to alleviate and eradicate poverty. So we are on the same wave length."
, who leads the RIU Tanzania programmes said:
"It was really uplifting to hear my President say these things. This has inspired us at RIU Tanzania to work even harder and to reach more people. It is so wonderful to hear the President say that RIU and the Tanzanian Government are on the same wavelength and that he wants to ensure this project goes forward and grows.
We have to find ways to continue this project after the current phase of RIU finishes in June 2011.We still have a long way to go with this project."