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News - Date: 19 May 2019
Written by: Mbulaheni Ridovhona / Viewed: 1984
Unarine Siphuma's hard work, commitment and dedication are yielding positive results on his farm.
The 25-year-old Siphuma is currently leasing 10 hectares of land at Ha-Mandiwana, which he uses to plant green peppers, tomatoes, onions, spinach and beetroot.
In 2017, he registered to study civil engineering at the Mavhoyi campus of the Vhembe TVET college, but he dropped out in August that year. "My passion was in farming and that is why I decided to leave. When I was still at Vhembe TVET college, I had a small garden and it was doing very well. That is why I decided to venture into farming. I did not grow up with the love for farming, but my aunt motivated me a lot to take farming seriously," he said.
He added that he started farming because he was aware that he could develop himself in agriculture. “I love being an entrepreneur because working for someone has never been on my mind. My late grandfather left us with a small portion of land that we can use for farming. So, I realized that I won't have a problem regarding the land I can use for farming.”
He said that he sold his products to the community members and sometimes at shopping centres. "My challenge for now is that I don't have a direct market, but I will overcome this obstacle. I also want to supply the local markets and neighbouring countries with my products," he added.
He has a plan of reducing the unemployment rate in his community. "In future, I want to employ some of the local people, so that they can support their families. I want to expand this farm, so I'll need some workers to help me," he said.
He's appealing to the Department of Agriculture for a financial support and a borehole. "If the government is willing to support me, I'll produce more products. A lack of water is a serious challenge to my productivity," he said.
Young farmer Unarine Siphuma.
The 22-year-old Mbulaheni (Gary) Ridovhona has been passionate about journalism to the extent that he would buy himself a copy of weekly Univen students' newsletter, Our Voice. After reading, he would write stories about his rural village, Mamvuka, and submit them to the very newsletter for publication. His deep-rooted love for words and writing saw him register for a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies at the University of Venda, and joined the Limpopo Mirror team in February 2016 as a journalism intern.