‘NGOS should work with government district structures’

Ntchisi, It is important for non-governmental organisations (NGOs) implementing agricultural projects to work closely with agriculture offices at district level to ensure sustainability of different agricultural technologies introduced by partners, says Francis Mhango, assistant district agriculture development officer in Ntchisi.

In an interview with Malawi News Agency, Mhango said the district’s agriculture office has structures reaching the grassroots and it makes it easy for development partners to effectively work and impart knowledge and skills on new technologies they introduce in the district.

Partners cannot work in isolation; they need our office for easy implementation of their programs and sustainability. The new technologies can stay in communities if our office is fully involved, he said.

Mhango was speaking in the wake of recent visits organized by his office to farmers supported by partners working in the agriculture sector.

The aim of the visits was to appreciate how farmers were adopting the new technologies introduced by some NGOs and how they are benefiting from the same.

He applauded the support that the partners were rendering to his office and other sectors in the implementation of different activities in communities.

Hawkins Chirwa, field coordinator for Rural Livelihood Economic Enhancement Project (RLEEP), acknowledged that it is indeed difficult for NGOs to achieve their goals without the involvement of the agriculture office, which serves as a hub for all agricultural programs in the district.

Normally any agriculture project uses the agriculture extension workers based right in the communities and they are under the district office. You cannot reach to the farmers without their involvement Chirwa said.

He then commended the office in for its role in monitoring and supervision, and quality assurance on agriculture projects implemented projects in the district.

The agriculture office and all government sectors are instrumental in the implementation of most NGO projects in districts. Generally, our activities become so easier when we work with government sectors, Chirwa said.

Source: Malawi News Agency MANA