The Ministry of Agriculture has expressed its desire to work with media houses to make this year’s National Agricultural Show a success.
Speaking at a meeting intended for editors at the Attorney General’s Chambers on Friday, the Chief Agricultural Information and Public Relations officer of the Ministry, Mogogi Kojane, told the media that the ministry requires their help to publicize this year’s event.
She asserted that they wanted to brand the show and they needed the media to help them in doing this.
The meeting comprised of members of the media as well as members from the Ministry’s Information, media departments and members of the Agricultural show committee.
Mogogi said this year’s show is different.
“This year’s show is different in that it won’t run concurrently with any other event such as the Global Expo or the consumer fair,” she said.
She said that the Agricultural show was, in previous years, clouded by other shows, which confused attendants since they failed to recognize the show as an event in its own right, adding that breaking from the Global Expo and the Consumer Fair was the right thing to do.
She also mentioned that they see Agriculture as a way of easing down the effect of the credit crunch on a lot of people’s lives, thus the theme for this year: Agriculture-Mitigation to Global Economic Downturn.
Last week, the Sunday Standard reported on the ministry’ breakfast meeting held on June 18 with different stakeholders to express the financial constraints they were experiencing with funding the show.
The members of the show committee expressed gratitude to the pledge they received during last week’s meeting and urged more stakeholders to step in and help fund the national show, which will be held in August this year.
On presenting the components of the show, Nathaniel Motshabi of the MoA, said that farmers will be given a chance to exhibit their products then there will follow the ribbon dressing before the prize giving.
Registration for livestock will be on the 8th and 9th August and the judging will be on the 10th and 11th of August.
Motshabi also revealed that they were currently working on the food court.
“Last year, the consumer fair took care of the food court and now that we are alone, we have to do it our way.” He added that they were trying to encourage Batswana to partake on the preparations for the court. She also said that they were aiming at displaying and serving the same foods, which will be displayed by the farmers.
Members of the show committee also put out that they were trying to set up the Agricultural show so that it can ultimately be organized and run by the farmers, with the ministry only participating as an advisory body.
Tshipo Moruti, a show committee member, said that they had been trying to let the farmers run the show but it turned out that the farmers “are too slow to meet and organize the show”.
However the Ghanzi District was mentioned as the only district whose farmers have managed to run their district show over the years.
Motshabi said that they were in the process of liaising with the Botswana Defence Force, Botswana Police Service and Botswana Prisons bands to get them to provide entertainment during the show.
“We need a crowd puller,” he said.