Zaka woman helps villagers breed road-runners

The old adage 'A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle' well describes the efforts of a remarkable Zaka businesswoman, reports PAMENUS TUSO.

Sarah Phineas Munemo

Sarah Phineas Munemo

Sarah Phineas Munemo, 47, has introduced an indigenous chicken breeding and rearing project to marginalised communities in Masvingo province. This respected female empowerment activist and successful businesswoman recently embarked on a road runner chicken project in Mwenezi, Zaka and Masvingo Rural districts. The project is supported by the Harare-based Tafadzwa neChiyedza Women Training Consultancy.

Its focus is threefold: “Firstly to commercially produce eggs, secondly to breed indigenous day-old chicks and thirdly to rear road runners for their meat. 108 villagers have been identified, trained and assisted with start-up birds,” said Munemo in a recent interview. Through her own business contacts, Munemo has secured a ready market for poultry in the Netherlands.

“There is a high demand for our indigenous chickens in the Netherlands as they require about one million chickens per year.  Because of the potential benefit to our local communities, this project requires great dedication and commitment and we stress this to all potential beneficiaries,” she said.

Strict food security
Munemo will soon be travelling to The Netherlands to pave the way for the deal. In order to meet the European Union (EU)’s strict food security standards, her company, in conjunction with Tafadzwa neChiyedza, is planning to set up state-of-the-art hatcheries and abattoirs that meet the standards of the international market.

She started her cross-border trade activities in the early 90’s while working as a bursar for the Ministry of Education in Masvingo.
She left the ministry in 1998 and progressed into full-time cross-border trading.

“I owe all my achievements to cross-border trading. I used to buy here and resell items like suits and wood carvings in Namibia, Zambia and Tanzania. I would then buy commodities in those countries and resell them here,” recalled Munemo.

Her name is now well known in Zaka and throughout the country. She runs a thriving motel and a private school at the Jerera growth point in Zaka. The two enterprises have 12 permanent employees.

Professional service
“The motel is renowned for offering a professional service. My team leader is a former banker and this has greatly assisted my businesses.

The motel regularly plays host to NGO’s, government workers and officials and wedding parties,” said this busy mother of four.
Munemo is also a member of the Agenda for Sustainable for Developing Women (ASDW), a business interaction platform for leading Pan African women based in Pretoria, South Africa.

Because of her role in women’s empowerment activism, ASDW has requested Munemo to nominate four Zimbabwean men who excel at promoting women’s empowerment.
The successful nominees will be honoured by ASDW at an event to be held in SA later this year.

Munemo was born in 1968 at the Morgenster Mission in Masvingo. She completed her “0” level studies in 1985 at Morgenster secondary school. She is married with four children and is the current Masvingo Chamber Secretary General of SMEs.

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