Podcaster 19


N2Africa Podcaster 19

March, April and May 2013

Title Summary Newsletter item #

N2Africa always has plenty to report – working across some many countries and regions! It’s hard to select a few highlights and although we actively solicit articles the Podcaster is formed largely by contributions offered. We are currently full speed ahead with preparations of the full proposal for a Phase II of N2Africa. As you will have read in earlier Podcasters we are expanding activities to Ethiopia, Tanzania and Uganda, and together with Ghana and Nigeria these will be the focus countries. ...

Obituary announcement D.K.C. Dhiliwayo

It was with great shock and sadness that we learned of the untimely death of Dr. DKC Dhliwayo. Dr Dhliwayo, or DKC as he was known to colleagues and friends was the Head of Chemistry and Soil Research Institute (CSRI) of Zimbabwe`s Ministry of Agriculture, Mechanization and Irrigation Development. The CSRI hosts the Soil Productivity Research Laboratory in Marondera that produced rhizobium inoculants that have been so key to the activities of N2Africa. DKC did his PhD on phosphorus availability in Zimbabwean soils in the Soil Science and Agricultural Engineering Department of the University of Zimbabwe. He had a strong interest and background in soil chemistry and plant nutrition, and had worked on a wide variety of projects throughout his career relating to mineral nutrient deficiencies. On behalf of the Zimbabwean N2Africa team and the wider N2Africa community, we extend our condolences to his direct colleagues and his family. Our thoughts are with them in this difficult time.

Dr H. D. L. (Tom) Corby, 1913–2013

We were sad to learn that Tom Corby passed away in January shortly before reaching his 100th birthday. Tom was one of the absolute front runners in research on the legume-rhizobium symbiosis in Africa, and in the world. He established the inoculant production factory at Grasslands, Marondera in 1962, which produces inoculants to this day. In 2011, Tom wrote a short history of the establishment of the factory called "The Bagacillo Legume-Inoculant". Also in the early 1960s he conducted multi-locational field trials examining soyabean variety by inoculant strain interactions across Zimbabwe and Zambia (what were then southern and northern Rhodesia). He is perhaps best know in the research world for his ground breaking work on legume nodule morphology which was the basis of his PhD. A full obituary by Janet Sprent is published this month in the New Phytologist – LINK

Resignation from CIAT N2Africa DRC

Dieudonné Masumbuko Mongane – by many people better known as DD – joined N2Africa as Farm Liaison Officer in February 2010, right at the start of all N2Africa activities in DR Congo. He has always worked with great compassion with partner organisations and farmers to strive to better people’s lives. Now he is moving on to a new challenging in his career. ...

Women farmers engage in production and distribution of Soyabean seed in South Kivu, DR Congo

In South Kivu province of DR Congo, seed systems for most crops are almost non-existent. As a result, a large share of the seed being planted is obtained from open air grain market or derived from previous year’s harvest. The good news is that the situation is slowly changing. Through N2Africa, farmers are increasingly becoming aware of the benefits accruing from using quality seeds. ...

Triple layer hermitic bags is a potential solution to storage pests in Rwanda

Post harvest handling and storage of grains constitute a major challenge for farmers, especially in the rural areas of Rwanda. Especially insect pests cause major losses during grain storage. Farmers use several storing technologies but most of them are not effective, expensive or present health risks due to misuse or overuse of chemicals such as insecticides. ...

Activités de diffusion en masse et approche agriculture-élevage dans N2Africa au Sud Kivu

Les activités de diffusion en masse en RDC regroupent des journées champêtres, des visites d’échange, la journée internationale de la femme, ainsi que des émissions radio t. Elles sont organisées par les ONG partenaires tel que PAD, DIOBASS et SARCAF. Ce sont des moments de partage d’expériences et des occasions d’enrichissement mutuel. ...

Large-scale dissemination activities and integrated crop – livestock systems in N2Africa, South Kivu (translation of the French article above)

The dissemination activities in DRC consist of various types, of which the large-scale dissemination activities (field days, exchange visits, international women’s day, radio broadcasts, etc.), organised by the NGO partners PAD, DIOBASS and SARCAF, are moments of sharing experiences and an opportunity for mutual enrichment. ...

Engineers meet scientists to design an inoculum plant
The new Business Incubator Platform on the IITA campus in Ibadan continues to expand with the planned construction of a new inoculum plant. Last week, engineers from IITA’s Facility Management Services met for two days with scientists from IITA and Wageningen University, the Netherlands, and from Legume Technology, a commercial inoculum producer from the UK, and collectively designed the plant’s structure and anticipated operations. ...

Rhizobium inoculant production in the N2Africa soil microbiology laboratory at Kalambo in the Sud Kivu province, Democratic Republic of Congo

The Faculty of Agriculture, Université Catholique de Bukavu, DRC, a partner of N2Africa, is implementing rhizobiology activities in the framework of the objective 3 of the N2Africa project, which global goal being enhancing inputs from BNF in smallholder farming systems.

For the full article by Professor Walangululu see this link.

Promising elite rhizobium strains from Kivu, DRC, isolated and tested
My name is Bintu Ndusha, I am a Congolese student at University of Nairobi with my studies funded by the N2Africa project. I am currently doing my research on my project in Rhizobiology titled "Effectiveness of Rhizobia strains isolated from South Kivu soils in nodulation of Soyabean (Glycine max)".
Scientific seminar to discuss and present the outcomes of Phase I of N2Africa

We are pleased to announce a scientific seminar to discuss and present the outcomes of the first four years of N2Africa. The event will take place in Nairobi from 28 to 30 of October 2013. Invitees include the N2Africa steering committee, our major partners and other stakeholders in the project representating all the N2Africa countries, from the scientific and development community as well as government representatives. ...

Conference announcements

Announcement 27th SSEA and 6th ASSS conference in Nakuru, Kenya,  20-25 Oct 2013

Reminder: Global Food Security Conference, 29 September - 2 October 2013 in Noordwijkerhout ,the Netherlands

Bulletin of Tropical Legumes

The latest Bulletin of Tropical Legumes that features Mali, has now been added to the N2Africa website: Link


The Podcaster is published six times per year – we look forward to receiving news and contributions – particularly from partners. Please send in contributions well in time. Contact address for this newsletter is: N2Africa.office@wur.nl

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