Government remains committed to address rural poverty despite challenges being faced in attaining economic equality between rural and urban areas, a senior government official has said.
Addressing a two day Rural Economy Knowledge Sharing Forum which is being co-hosted by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and The Space, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare, Mr. Ngoni Masoka revealed that government is working towards ending poverty in the rural areas but faces a hard task in doing so due to the shrinking economy.
He said for the country to develop economically, government must see to it that rural dwellers are empowered so as to boost productivity.
He added that government is in the process of reviewing the National Employment Policy to include the rural populace.
He said, “This event comes at a time when we are trying to strategize on how we can redistribute our wealth as a nation to benefit everyone with special emphasis placed on the rural economy.
“The task to fight rural poverty has always been our priority,” Masoka said while adding that government has adopted resolutions to regulate the labour market in a fair and just way.
He said it is government wishes to see these resolutions being streamlined both in the rural and urban areas.
“70% of our population stays in the rural areas and most of them are vulnerable groups. It is against this background that we seek to empower them as it helps the economy to grow as well.
“We are currently reviewing the National Employment Policy in order to accommodate new strategies and to increase participation of rural communities through the introduction of community trusts
Government is also addressing challenges such as climate change, HIV/AIDS, land degradation and poverty and we invite organizations such as ILO to help us address these issues to the people in the rural areas,” Makoto said.
The two day workshop seeks to find solutions to the challenges facedby rural workers as well as proffer solutions on what can be done to uplift rural livelihoods.
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