FS Female in Agriculture awarded

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THANDI XABA

Provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development hosted their annual 2014 District Female Entrepreneur awards at the President Hotel with the guests from several parts of the Free State dressed to impress.

Nominees gathered to celebrate the skill, resourcefulness and business insight of those present, under the encouraging theme: ‘Recognising the role of women and their contribution into Africa’s Agriculture and Food Security’.

Under the five categories, which were Best Female Worker, Top Entrepreneur for Subsistence farming, Top Entrepreneur: Processing, Top Entrepreneur: Commercial as well as Top Entrepreneur: Smallholding, each winner was awarded with varying prize money and certificates and will go to represent the province at the National Awards in North West on August 22nd.

Free State MEC of the department Mamiki Qabathe says they don’t only deal with women issues in August but work with female in agriculture throughout the year.

“We don’t deal with woman issues only in August; this month is when we give awards to those women who we see are doing well after working with them for the whole year. I am very content with the work that we are doing.”

The Top Entrepreneur Commercial award went to Mponeng Lentoro from Manguang Metro Bloemfontein. She is the owner of Lentoro Farming Consultants that operates from Vergezocht Farm in Bainsvlei. She obtained her degree in Environmental Health at Central University of Technology.

“I feel so humbled and grateful to God and to the department of agriculture. One may say Mponeng has won but it’s a team work effort,” she says.

The farm, a total of 1064-hectares, to which 750-hectares is arable land and under irrigation has four enterprises. She applauds Qabathe for all her support and for being hands on in ensuring they succeed in the agriculture.

Guests were treated to an un-expected performance by Tshepo Tshola, fondly known as the Village Pope by his fans. He was later joined by another highly loved musician