Zimbabwe: Matibiri to Hit the Ground Running At Zas

Dr Andrew Matibiri has been with the Tobacco Industry and Marketing Board for the past 12 years.

Dr Matibiri is now with the Zimbabwe Agricultural Society as the chief executive officer. Our senior agriculture reporter Elita Chikwati (EC) spoke to Dr Matibiri (AM) on the sidelines of the ongoing 111th Zimbabwe Agriculture Show.

EC: You have joined ZAS. What have you brought to the society in terms of experience?

AM: I joined the Zimbabwe Agricultural Society after having been at the helm of the tobacco industry for over 12 years. This in itself represents an invaluable depth of knowledge and connectivity within the industry. The agricultural sub-sectors are invariably interconnected and this gave me the advantage of being able to hit the ground running.

EC: When did you join ZAS and how has been your experience with the society?

AM: I started reporting for work at ZAS on Wednesday 4 August 2021. So far I have found the post of CEO of ZAS exhilarating and have found that it requires some skills that I had to develop very quickly.

Broadly speaking the mandate of ZAS is to promote agriculture and its supporting activities and to facilitate agricultural development in Zimbabwe, being best exemplified by holding the Zimbabwe Agricultural Show and conferences around it.

This I had to learn to carry out very quickly as this year’s edition of the show had already been pencilled in for September.

EC: What is your vision for ZAS?

AM: My vision for ZAS is anchored on the 2020 — 2024 Strategy for ZAS, which is based on 5 pillars, and these are:

(a) The build pillar — to create a farming business ethic and improve production and productivity of farmers, especially rural farmers, with emphasis on women and youth.

(b) The visual pillar — to highlight and showcase progress in agricultural development and illuminate its supporting business ecosystem.

(c) the narrative pillar — to facilitate discussion, and lead distillation and synthesis of policy and practical national issues for innovation, modernisation and technological advancement of agriculture for accelerating national development.

(d) The word pillar — to communicate effectively and to package and efficiently disseminate agricultural information.

(e) The link pillar — to nurture and sustain collaborations for effective mobilisation and deployment of resources for the cause of agriculture.

EC: How can you describe the 2021 Zim Agric Show?

AM: This year’s edition of the show will again be held on the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic. However unlike last year when only members of the corporate world could visit, this year the general public will be allowed to visit the show after following the requisite Covid-19 safety protocols. In terms of space uptake and the number of exhibitors we have seen a 20 percent increase over that which was witnessed in 2020.

EC: How appropriate is this year’ theme to the agriculture sector and attainment of Vision 2030 and NDS1?

AM: The vision of the Zimbabwe Agricultural Show Society as exposed in its 2020 — 2024 Strategy is “Improving farmers’ livelihoods for economic development” with the mission statement being “Nurturing and sustaining an ecosystem of farmer support and promotion of agriculture”. Both the vision and mission statements are in sync with the national Vision 2030 and NDS1.

EC: How many exhibitors registered this year compared to last year?

AM: We now have over 300 exhibitors, compared to 210 in 2020.

EC: What are this year’ s show highlights and their importance to the sector?

AM: The major highlight is that ZAS is celebrating the bumper harvests realised last season. There will be some musical entertainment and fireworks on Friday and Saturday evenings.

EC: Where do you see ZAS in 5 years to come?

AM: In five years’ time I hope to see a vibrant and responsive society that will have transformed itself from being a display facility to one that provides opportunities for all business and to have broadened the appeal of the annual show and its attendant conferences and meetings.


Source link : https://allafrica.com/stories/202110010198.html

Author : The Herald

Publish date : 2021-10-01 07:34:36

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