Chikankata districts receives seed packs
Mazabuka, July 16, ZANIS —— Government has allocated a total of 22,096 agriculture packs to Mazabuka and Chikankata districts for use by farmers in the 2013-2014 farming season.
Mazabuka District Commissioner Eugene Munyama said the packs will be released by government through the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock under the Farmer Input Support Program (FISP).
He stated that the inputs have already started arriving in the two districts adding that government wants to make sure that farmers collect their inputs before the onset of the first planting rains.
“With these inputs arriving in time, I expect a bumper harvest in the 2013/2014 farming season. May I also encourage you to ensure that your names are properly recorded, all the farmers /beneficiaries should register through their respective agricultural officers to ease the process of input distribution, “implored Mr Munyama.
Mr. Munyama was speaking over the weekend during the Mazabuka district Agricultural and Commercial Show held in Chief Mwanachingwala’s area whose theme was “Creating Wealth in a Changing Environment through Business Innovation”.
The District Commissioner stated that this year’s theme was in line with government’s objective of empowering the farming community with high profit making agriculture technologies such as crop diversification and crop marketing.
Mr Munyama assured farmers in Hanjalika and Mwanachingwala chiefdoms that government will continue to support conservation agriculture in the two areas with the support from the European Union a program that has been implemented in the district from the year 2009.
“Am glad to learn that his Royal Highness Chief Mwanachingwala has taken a leading role in practicing Conservation Agriculture and has already ripped more than 5 hectors field in readiness for the next season. With this guidance from his royal highness, I want to encourage all of us to go the Conservation Agricultural way to overcome the challenges of climate change effects like erratic rainfall and partial droughts,” observed Mr Munyama.
The Show was attended by Chief Hanjalika, Magoye Member of Parliament Oliver Mulomba among others and saw companies like Pioneer seed, Zamseed, Seedco, Omnia fertilizers, Kayeema Hort Agricare Services, DK seed and 27 local cooperatives taking part in the exhibitions.
Show Society Chairperson Henry Lwiindi commended government for introducing the Electronic – Voucher system in its FISP program saying the system will reduce the chances of misappropriations of inputs to the intended target group by some selfish individuals.
Mr Lwiindi further thanked government for rehabilitating and constructing dip tanks which he said will benefit farmers by way of dipping their animals timely and prevent the spread of diseases.
He however appealed to government to consider tailoring the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission fund in such a way that cooperatives could benefit adding that the loan facility will help farmers to access or buy simple irrigation equipments, particularly those that live along perennial streams and dams.
“This will help farmers mitigate the effects of climate change as they will not only rely on rain fed crop production. And those that are in Livestock and Poultry production, these loans will go a long way, observed Mr Lwiindi.
ZANS/ENDS/LL/SM ——— DRY