Dutywa, formerly part of the Transkei Bantustan, is located between East London and Mthatha in the eastern boundary of the Mbhashe Local Municipality in the Eastern Cape. On Thursday, 24 August, the annual Eastern Cape Communal Wool Growers Association Congress (E.C.W.G.A.) hosted by the Falakahla community in the Dutywa (formerly Idutywa) district, welcomed at least 600 guests.
The congress was hosted in Xhosa, with some translation into English, and attended by men and women who traveled either on foot, or covered vast distances to attend the event which is driven by the National Wool Growers Association (NWGA). Discussions homed in on sheep farming as a sustainable business and a major contributor to radical economic transformation in the communal market.
Despite a nippy cold front, a festive atmosphere reigned throughout the day. The atmosphere was ignited by singing and dancing tribesmen chanting slogans in Xhosa about the need for farmers to produce food and wool.
The infrastructure discussion was sponsored by BKB. Cape Wools and government were urged to accelerate the building of more shearing sheds, renovation of sheds, fencing of grazing camps and scooping of dams to optimize the use of communal land.