South African Journal of Agricultural Extension
On-line version ISSN 2413-3221
JONA, C. N. and TERBLANCHE, S. E.. Farmers' perception on contact frequency, adequacy, relevance and quality of agriculture support services (Ass) in Oshikoto region in Namibia. S Afr. Jnl. Agric. Ext. [online]. 2015, vol.43, n.1, pp. 107-121. ISSN 2413-3221.
In Oshikoto region of Namibia, agricultural services are associated with several challenges such as, lack of enough resources, unresponsiveness to farmers' needs, ineffectiveness and unreliability. In addition, the roles played by different stakeholders are not well understood. Despite these challenges there are many Agricultural Support Services (ASS) providers in the Oshikoto region. It is against that background that this paper explores farmers' perception with regard to the services provided by ASS in the Oshikoto region. The paper uses a case study approach on communal and commercial farmers in Oshikoto region. Results from the study shows that service providers who were perceived to be adequate, relevant, and able to give quality services, have only catered for a few farmers whereby communal farmers receive less of these services compared to commercial farmers. Over half of the farmers had no contact with an ASS provider for over a year. Private Extension Providers, NGOs, and Agricultural Mentors were among the ASS providers that were perceived to offer adequate, relevance and quality services compared to the rest. Findings from the study will help to improve current and future working relationship between ASS and farmers. In addition, the findings can assist in the developing of an Agricultural Extension Policy in Namibia that involves all stakeholders and address the needs of farmers.