South African Vice President Cyril Ramaphosa has released a book on the Ankole cattle breed.
Ramaphosa launched the book – Cattle of the Ages, Stories and Portraits of the Ankole Cattle of Southern Africa – at his 65th birthday celebrations in Sandown, Johannesburg, where he also spoke about job creation in South Africa’s (SA) agricultural sector.
A million agricultural jobs could be created in South Africa if the same empowerment model is used that he applies in the business world, he said. Ramaphosa Trust’s Black Umbrellas incubation centre for small and medium enterprises has created 1 237 business ventures, which resulted in jobs for 10 527 people.
Ramaphosa was introduced to, and bought, Ankole cattle in Uganda, but could not import them to SA. Dr. Morné de la Rey, a veterinarian, eventually imported some Ankole embryos and there are about 300 of these cattle in SA at present.
The process to bring the breed to SA took 13 years and Ramaphosa’s original herd is still in Kenya, where it was exported before the beginning of the local embryo-based breeding programme.