Northern Province Minister Gerry Chanda has strongly castigated Nyiombo Investment Limited for failing to supply adequate fertilizer to vulnerable farmers in the province.
Col Chanda has since given Nyiombo an ultimatum of up to January 20 this year to delivery all the fertilizer allocated to the province failure to which government will take serious action against the fertilizer firm.
The minister, who was visibly annoyed, told Nyiombo Investment Limited Assistant Regional Manager Paul Mutale during a stakeholders meeting in Kasama that his company will be held responsibility if Northern province were to experience food insecurity.
He said it is unacceptable for Nyiombo to delay the delivery of D-compound and Urea despite having a contractual obligation with government.
Col Chanda charged that he will not tolerate excuses by the fertilizer firm that the delay in delivering the farming inputs was due to government’s initial delay in awarding the contract to the company to supply the commodity.
He observed that Nyiombo Investment limited consented to the provision of the contract to supply fertilizer in good time but wondered why it was failing to honour its obligation.
Col Chanda said it would be embarrassing for the people of Northern province to ask for relief food from government when the area is well known for bumper harvests in maize production.
And Mr Mutale said the delay by Nyiombo in delivering fertilizer to Northern province was due to transportation problems facing the company in ferrying fertilizer from Dar-es-salaam in Tanzania to Zambia.
He however said his company was doing everything possible to overcome the challenges of meeting its obligation of supplying fertilizer to the expectant farmers.
Mr Mutale further promised to relay the message to his superiors in Lusaka that government was not happy with the performance of Nyiombo Investment Limited in Northern province.