Photo by Andrew Maki

African Farmers, Rural Push and Urban Pull Factor and Other Reports

Every week, Rural Reporters collate reports on development in rural Africa and its environs. The reports include some of our top picks from recent must-read research, interviews, reports, blogs and in-depth articles which have been carefully selected to help you keep up with global issues. Here are some of the updates you may have missed from the previous week:

How grains could lift the gloom for Africa’s farmers

Empowering farmers to increase legume production can turn the tide for African farmers. Grain legumes are rich in carbohydrates, minerals and are a cheap source of protein. They improve soil fertility by capturing nitrogen gas in the air and bringing it into the soil. The amount of atmospheric nitrogen fixed by legumes into usable nitrogen can be substantial.

Nigeria to begin exporting processed cashew nuts by 2019

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Audu Ogbeh, said that the country would start processing its raw cashew nuts for export by 2019.

Ogbeh made this known at the maiden edition of the 2017 First Bank Agric Expo in Lagos.

According to him, the current worth of a tonne of roasted or processed cashew nut for export is $10,000 while the raw cashew nut is sold for $1,200.

He said it would be better to process the nuts for export instead of exporting raw cashew nuts in order to benefit from the high cost of cashew nuts.

The rural push and urban pull factor….An urbanisation headache in independent Namibia

Windhoek-Namibia has since independence seen tremendous growth in its capital city as well as its major towns, where people flock in search of greener pastures.

According to the Namibia Population and Housing Census, in 1991 the urban population of Namibia stood at 28 percent. The population subsequently increased to 33 percent in 2001 and 42 percent in 2011.

According to the Namibia Statistics Agency, this trend is not unique to Namibia but it is observed in most southern African countries where levels of urbanisation are estimated to have reached over 50 percent.

The Land Issue in Africa

efore Africa was carved up and occupied by the European Colonial Powers, land in Africa was largely under populated and human population growth was slow and could quite easily be accommodated. The many tribes of Africa (we speak more than 2000 languages or dialects of languages), were largely divided into those who concentrated on livestock as a mean of subsistence or crops. The divide was often determined by rainfall patterns with the livestock tribes using land that was arid or semi arid.     

How Morocco tapped into Africa’s renewable energy potential

Providing reliable, affordable and sustainable access to energy has become a core focus of the international development community and is the seventh goal of the 2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Roughly 1.2 billion people, or 17 percent of the global population, are energy poor, meaning that they have no access to electricity. Meanwhile, more than 2.7 billion people, primarily in developing Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, rely on fuelwood and other traditional biomass sources for cooking.

Morocco’s experience with solar power offers key lessons for policymakers elsewhere in Africa who are seeking a robust pathway for addressing energy access challenges.

Pastoralist Attacks Have Kenyan Ranchers Living in Fear

Ranch owners in Kenya’s Laikipia County, a plateau and home to some of the largest ranches and conservancies in the country, are living in constant fear following a several attacks by armed pastoralists.

According to witnesses, cattle herders equipped with AK-47 rifles, spears and poisoned arrows have been moving around the county, targeting fenced-in properties. The attackers have destroyed homes, maimed animals and burned lodges.

Farmers in Tanzania benefit from more resilient potato varieties

Situated in the Northeast of Tanzania, the district of Lushoto is part of the so called highlands of Tanzania where potatoes are traditionally grown. Due to heat and lack of resilient potato varieties, farmers would lose all the crop especially when they grow the local variety called Kidinya which is extremely susceptible to Late Blight disease.

To address these issues, the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), initiated a study aimed at developing more resilient potato varieties that can grow in both long and short rainy seasons and give higher yields.


Busayo Sotunde is a prolific writer with special focus on Business, Entrepreneurship, Reproductive Health and other development issues in Africa. Her articles have been published by different outlets including Investing Port and She has a penchant for reading and sustainable development. Follow Busayo on Twitter @BusayomiSotunde

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