Stand alone agro-ecology unit for city

24 January 2018 | Web Article Number: ME20188330

Agriculture & Sugar
Environmental Management & Control
Government & Municipal

An Agro-Ecology Unit will be established in Durban following the tabling of a report at the Executive Committee meeting held on Tuesday, 23 January.

The unit will fall under the eThekwini Municipality’s Community and Emergency Services Cluster. The submission of the report included the recommended organogram for the Unit.

The report states that agriculture is occurring in an ad-hoc fashion in urban, suburban, former townships, informal settlements and rural areas around eThekwini. Therefore, this unit will coordinate and regulate these small-scale initiatives, link small and medium semi-rural initiatives to the broader market and nurture them as suppliers of the Agri-Park.

The Agro-Ecology Unit will also drive agriculture support as a sustainable livelihoods strategy to ensure that there is total ownership and accountability for all projects from start to finish. The Unit will aim to ensure a far more effective and efficient coordination of service delivery and poverty alleviation.

The organogram for the unit includes a head to provide direction and strategy on the community gardens, farming and aqua-culture functions of the proposed unit and a deputy head to concentrate on community gardens and farming services.

Under the deputy head there will be two senior managers who will be responsible for the regions and will oversee the implementation of community gardens and farming services in the North/Central, South/Central and Inner/Outer West Regions. There will also be managers in each stand alone agro-ecology unit for city region.

The report noted that the agriculture function does exist within the Parks, Recreation and Culture Unit with dedicated resources. This function will be transferred to the newly created Agro-Ecology Unit. It further states that there are unfunded and funded vacant posts as well as “warm bodies” that could be transferred to the newly created Unit.

The vacant and new positions will undergo the normal recruitment processes.

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