–Eastern province tops vitamin A deficiency list

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Eastern province tops vitamin A deficiency list

Chipata , March 15, 2013, ZANIS…..Eastern Province minister Malozo Sichone says vitamin A deficiency is a serious life threatening condition in children.

And Harvest Plus country manager Dr Eliab Simpungwe says eastern province has the highest number of vitamin A deficiency.

Meanwhile, Mr Sichone says vitamin A deficiency can easily damage the immune system in children making them vulnerable to life threatening infections such as diarrhoea, pneumonia and malaria

He said this in a speech read on his behalf by eastern province assistant secretary Agness Chinyama during the orange maize field day at senior chief Nzamane’s  palace in Chipata yesterday.

The Provincial Minister said government is still discussing the possibility of adding vitamin A to white maize mealie meal.

He said orange maize provides agricultural solutions to public health problems and that it should be adopted for consumption as it easily improves vitamin A levels therefore keeping people healthy.

And senior chief Nzamane of the Ngoni people appealed to his subjects to participate in growing orange maize because of its nutritional benefits.

The chief has asked his subjects to plant their crops early advising that they should consider the rainfall pattern before planting.

Chief Nzamane has appealed to government to consider orange maize to be a subsidized so that farmers can easily find market for the commodity.

And speaking at the same occasion Harvest Plus country manager Dr Eliab Simpungwe said there is need to add  vitamin A in the country’s staple food.

Dr Simpungwe explained that the orange maize crop is a local cross breed and not a genetically modified organism-GMO.

He said three provinces in the country have been targeted to produce orange maize namely eastern, central and southern Provinces.