Traditional leaders in Masvingo Province have urged farmers in Gutu and surrounding areas to take climatic change seriously by keeping abreast with information from the meteorological department, consulting Agritex officers and growing varieties that are drought tolerant.

Unfavourable climatic conditions such as drought and flash floods are taking a toll on Zimbabwe, and most countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa.

The El-Nino induced drought wrecked havoc to the country, resulting in a disastrous 2018/19 farming season, and in most cases the burden of such a drought falls heavily on small scale farmers who largely rely on nature to grow their crops.

It is against this background that chiefs in Masvingo converged in Gutu to share advice with communities and small scale farmers on best possible ways of improving yields under such conditions.

Speaking during a provincial field day hosted by a local seed company in Gutu District, Chief Gutu and Chief Serima hailed such an event as an important platform to educate farmers on best farming practices.

Host farmer, Mr Jefta Hamandawana, who had a good harvest despite this year’s El-Nino induced drought, said the success of today’s farming depends on technology, moreso knowing the seed varieties to grow depending on the amount of rainfall predicted.

An agronomist and Syngenta Sales and Support Manager, Mr Moses Kudanga who graced the field day, hailed the gathering as a platform for the education of farmers on best agricultural practices, something that has seen the province improving on cropping despite the climate.

Masvingo falls in farming region 4 and 5, and receives medium to low rainfall, a situation requiring the government and other stakeholders to support small scale farmers on best farming practices to combat food shortages.