The Valley Irrigation Scheme in Matobo district has resumed operations after it stopped production in 2014, bringing relief to the community that used to depend on the facility for food and income.

Due to a host of challenges  among them obsolete equipment and high utility bills valley irrigation scheme stopped operations in 2014 but thanks to the intervention by the government , Food Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and Pro Africa, production has since resumed.

The chairman of the irrigation scheme Mr Gibson Zulu said while farmers are grateful for the support received from the stakeholders which includes the provision of state of the art irrigation equipment under the Brazil loan scheme, they are being held back by delays in the installation of one if its centre pivots.

The small holder farmers who have planted eight hectares of land under special maize programme are also looking to benefit from the command livestock programme recently launched by the government.

The community reminisced about the good old days when the irrigation scheme was a major source of income and employment in the area saying they are hopeful the facility will increase its capacity utilisation.

The 353 farmers who planted their first crops in November last year have only utilised 40 hectares of the 200 hectares piece of land.

Valley Irrigation Scheme is among the 10 irrigation schemes being rehabilitated under the small holder irrigation programme.