Moyo - Project Conceptualization & Management - Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa

Nokwazi Moyo

Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa


My career aim has been to mainly address rural poverty by introduction of means and mechanism to create rural wealth through sustainable development principles. I have done this through exploration of opportunities in rural areas, conducting feasibility assessments, matching these with technological solutions and mobilizing resources to start operations that can create entrepreneurship and employment opportunities for the various classes of rural community inhabitants. My strategy has always been pro-poor, youth and gender focused with a particular emphasis on bringing opportunities to rural areas in order to reverse the youth urban-drift. Energy and Agriculture can contribute significantly to creation of a sustainable rural “Green Economy” sensitive to the “topical” Climate Change issues. In the African context, the sector with the greatest potential impact towards rural poverty alleviation is agriculture mainly through agro-processing where the most value lies. Viability of Agro-Processing can be greatly enhanced by integration and optimization of the renewable energy component into the process and supply-chain, and as a business spin-off in its own right.


Project Conceptualization & Management


Design and detailing of business projects focusing on start-ups, turnaround, acquisitions, diversification and modernization in Energy, Agro-Processing, Agriculture and Mining as well as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives

Work History

Regional Project Manager

United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)

From September 2011

1. Communication and Awareness raising – produced and distributed the Green Passport, and showcased GEF projects countrywide for Greening COP17 Project 2011
2. Promoting innovations in clean energy technologies in selected SMEs – Established the Cleantech South Africa Competition under NCPC-SA (CSIR) as a COP17 legacy project
3. Low-carbon public transport – acquired and distributed 300 bicycles to eThekwini Metro Municipality under the Non-Motorised Transport initiative
4. Pilot installation of SWH for health clinics to generate emissions offsets – Supervised the installation of low pressure solar water heaters on 19 rural clinics in KwaZulu-Natal, and organised demonstrations of rural energy solutions under the auspices of the UN Secretary-General’s “Sustainable Energy for All”, (SE4ALL)
5. Project Report writing and close-out
6. Future (COP17 Legacy) Project(s) design: South Africa and Botswana pilots
7. Preparation for the Southern Africa Region’s contribution to Rio+
8. Leading in establishment of SE4ALL Pilot Projects in South Africa and Botswana
9. Support to the Regional project on, Renewable Energy Strategy and Action Plan (RESAP)
10.Coordinating the proposed SADC Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Centre (SACREEE)
11.Support to the Enhancing Market Access of Emerging Agri-Businesses: Building a Framework for Pro-Poor Supply Chain and Cluster Development project in South Africa and SADC
12.Support to Country Programming missions, e.g., Malawi and Lesotho

Senior Programme Officer

UNDP Regional Trade and Investment

January 2010 - November 2010

Regional Trade Project on trade capacity development of African Trade institutions to achieve a harmonized trade negotiations position in the WTO/Doha and EPAs/EU. Negotiated an implementation strategy with AU/AUC/NPCA and dealt with 8 Regional Economic Communities (RECs) on trade facilitation (Free Trade Areas/Customs Unions/Common Markets; informal/formal cross-border trade and Aid for Trade Programme for non-LDCs), trade mainstreaming, trade negotiations and trade statistics. Also linked with other practices such as Gender, Governance, MDGs, Environment/Climate Change, Capacity Development and South-South Cooperation. The Project mainly focused on 5 RECs namely COMESA, EAC, ECCAS, ECOWAS and SADC

Executive Director

Development Foundation for Zimbabwe (DFZ)

November 2010 - August 2011

Coordination of Diaspora-based Zimbabweans to invest their resources mainly knowledge in the country. Flagship projects were in Agriculture, Renewable Energy (RE) focusing in solar (photo-voltaic, concentrated solar power, domestic water heating); biomass conversion to energy; biogas systems; coal-bed methane gas power plants; and hydro-power (Kariba South extension). Also worked on proposals for coal powered plants (Hwange unit 7 & 8). Vast knowledge in RE grid and off-grid solutions in South Africa’s and SADC’s IPP programmes.

Project Manager

United Nations Development Programme

May 2007 - January 2010

TECHNONET Africa Project focused on Agro-Processing, Agro-Based Industries and Small-Scale Mining using the strategy of technology transfer, entrepreneurship development and quality assurance targeting SMMEs in the African Region in conjunction with UNIDO, AU, NEPAD (now NPCA) and RECs. Organised training in COMFAR III, (a UNIDO computer model that converts feasibility data into business plan) in 7 African countries including South Africa. I am also a qualified and registered user of COMFAR III. Liaised with SEDA, South Africa as the hosting Participating Organization (PO) on several programmes such as “One Municipality One Product” initiative for the “War on Poverty” scheme of Government which implemented a pilot study in 4 municipalities (Ingquza Hill, Letsemeng, Blouberg & Msinga) in 4 different provinces (EC, Free State, Limpopo & KZN), respectively. Also collaborated with SEDA Technology Programme (STP) Incubators: FurnTech-Advanced Furniture Technologies, SEOBI-SEDA Essential Oil Business Incubator, and MSI-Mpumalanga Stainless Steel Initiative. Obtained a GEF-SGP grant for an Aquaculture Project base in Graaf Reinet, EC for addressing the dwindling pilchards supply from the ocean. Also supported aquaculture operations in the abalone industry in the west coast Western Cape Province. I produced the Repositioning Strategy, Business Plan and Project Document, for a repositioned TECHNONET Africa under Phase II of the Project.

Buyisa Agricultural Development Corporation

MD and co-founder

April 2003 - April 2007

Buyisa focused on consultancy services for commercial farming and post-production businesses targeting individual operators as well as institutions including government departments. As MD and co-founder of Buyisa I was responsible for its formalization with CIPRO-SA, starting of operations, marketing, implementation of projects and quality control. I also applied my professional agricultural engineering skills on relevant projects such as manufacturing of agricultural machinery/equipment, agro-processing, biofuels and feasibility studies. Did a Customized Sector Programme (CSP) study of 14 agro-processing enterprises prevalent in Mpumalanga Province. Also designed the manufacturing plant for a coated fertilizer called black urea™ that is more environmentally friendly in terms of carbon sequestration in the soil. Did a feasibility study on Waste to Energy plant for Moses Kotane Local Municipality in the North West Province.

General Manager

Tobacco Growers Trust (Zimbabwe)

October 1999 - December 2001

TGT was a body constituted by Government to coordinate procurement and importation of tobacco inputs for tobacco farmers through the conventional businesses that were facing foreign currency constraints. TGT administered a foreign currency retention scheme based on projections of future demand for the inputs. My responsibilities were to coordinate the allocations system and liaise with the Reserve Bank as well as verify and validate the procurement, delivery and distribution process.

Chief Executive Officer

Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union formerly Indigenous Commercial Farmers Union

December 1995 - September 1999

ZCFU is a membership organization for advocacy of farmers’ rights and business support systems. As the first CEO of the organization I was responsible for its formalization, structuring of the management system and starting operations. The position involved high public visibility, protocol and diplomacy as well as practical solution of farmers’ problems. I also created linkages with similar and relevant organizations worldwide. I formulated an alternative land reform scheme that was accepted by Cabinet (1999), but was not implemented (due to unrest) called Sub-division of Large Farms into Economically Viable Commercial Units that received support from the Danish Government (US$25 million).

Lecturer / Researcher

University of Zimbabwe

February 1992 - November 1995

In the Department of Soil Science and Agricultural Engineering I responsible for Machinery Design, Mechanization and Farm Power courses. The section of Agricultural Engineering was new so I had to develop the curriculum and get it accredited. I also carried out research in the design criteria for disc-ridgers for soil conservation tillage programme in conjunction with other Eastern & Southern African Universities.



May 1992 - April 1994

Responsible for hosting a post-graduate programme, Diploma in Agricultural Systems Analysis (DASA) for the sub-region. Also compiled a farming systems catalogue for the same region for AGROTEC.

Senior Research Engineer

The National Institute of Agricultural Engineering (IAE), Zimbabwe

January 1986 - January 1992

Started the Machinery Design and Management Section at IAE. Did my split- MPhil research on design and management of tractor and plough system in conjunction with Cranfield University (UK) and CEMAGREF (France). Later appointed as Chief Engineer of IAE. This was an administrative position involving Government and Donors

Quality Control Engineer, USA

Cenex Farmers' Cooperative

November 1981 - May 1983

Started this job on a “Professional Experience Program” and later appointed for a limited period as a Quality Control Engineer for the farmers’ cropping programmes with a focus on plant tissue testing and relaying the remedy recommendations to the farmers mainly to do with soil fertility management and pest/disease control.

Research Technician, USA

Department of Agricultural Engineering, University of Minnesota

September 1979 - October 1981

I was deployed to assist PhD students with their research work. I was attached to the waste management section and worked on anaerobic digestion of dairy waste/by-products such as cheese whey. Mainly did the routine measurements and kept records and compiled reports.



Implemented Phase I of the this project that covered 7 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa dealing with Agro-Processing, Mining, Tourism and Energy. I also planned Phase II of the project that passed the UNDP assessment and was submitted to the Japanese Government for support. The projected was within the South-South Cooperation Framework and involved Entrepreneurship Development, Industrail Cluster Modelling and Technology Transfer mainly from Asian (Tigers) countries to Sub-Saharan African countries.

Qualifications & Certifications

Agricultural Engineering

University of Cranfield, Silsoe

Agricultural Engineering

University of Minnesota

Preparatory for college admission

Metropolitan College

Dadaya High School

Waddilove Institute

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