Luapula chiefs advise govt on FISP
Chienge Mar 4/13, ZANIS——–Senior Chief Mununga of the Shila people of Chienge District in Luapula Province has advised government to seriously re-plan the distribution of farming inputs to the farmers, saying the late delivery of the inputs this season will result in poor crop harvest.
The Chief disclosed this when Luapula Province Permanent Secretary, Mbololwa Muyaba, paid a courtesy call on him at his palace.
Chief Mununga said the distribution of farming inputs has been a problem this farming season and will affect the morale and commitment of farmers to the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) as many farmers will lose out.
He said most of his subjects who were predominantly fishers have turned to farming following the depletion of fish stocks in the water bodies in the province but are being discouraged by poor distribution of inputs.
The chief said even himself as a traditional leader has become a serious farmer as he has put 5.5 hectares of land under maize cover this year which has been an increase from last farming season when he had 3hectares under maize cover.
Chief Mununga said he was worried, just like most of his subjects, that the late delivery of farming inputs will affect the yields this farming season.
He advised government to re-plan the distribution formula so that farmers could get the inputs on time because late deliveries demoralise the farmers and negatively affect their commitment and expectations on the crop yields.
And Chief Lukwesa of the Lunda people in Mwense District of Luapula Province advised government to review the FISP because the inputs have been going to the same beneficiaries every year while others have been left in dark.
Chief Lukwesa said the rules and set guidelines for the programme must not go to sleep but must be constantly monitored so that the programme benefits the larger community of peasant farmers in the country.