—Chipata District Commissioner, Kalunga Zulu, has assured farmers of government’s protection in their endeavours to produce more crops.
The assurance comes in the wake of revelation that one farmer had registered with two multipurpose cooperatives to acquire agricultural inputs under the Farmer Input Support Program (FISP) this year.
Mr. Zulu said farmers had a tendency of blaming and insulting government because of issues that were created by themselves through leaders of cooperatives who were supposed to help the smooth running of the organizations.
He was speaking when he officially handed over 30 bicycles to lead farmers in Chipata on behalf of the Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) at a ceremony held in Chipata today.
Mr Zulu challenged farmers to help the smooth implementation of a good agricultural policy by reporting people who were not honest to themselves and others.
‘’If things do not go well with you because of your own making, you start blaming and insulting government. I want to assure you that I will take interest in this matter and report the farmer to police so that others can learn a lesson from that,’’ he said.
And Mr Zulu said government was happy to work with cooperating partners who supplemented its efforts of improving its people’s livelihood.
He said the ZNFU was helping government in areas where it cannot be, adding that when farmers did not have the tools to use, it made the work of government difficult.
Mr Zulu also urged the Chipata District Farmers’ Association (CDFA), which is a subsidiary of ZNFU, to work closely with its farmers so that unscrupulous traders did not take advantage of the farmers.
Meanwhile, ZNFU Eastern Regional Manager, Michael Mambwe, said the bicycles will be used by lead farmers to register other farmers for the Lima Program and also do some loan recoveries.
Mr Mambwe said for the work to be lightened, the union had decided to give contact farmers some bicycles to ease their movements during membership mobilisation and organisation of meetings.
And CDFA Chairperson, Tedson Maseko, commended ZNFU for providing lead farmers with the bicycles, saying it will give the association strength to work hard to help farmers in the district.