Government has released K150 million to pay off all outstanding arrears to farmers who sold their maize to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA).
Agriculture and Livestock Minister Wylbur Simuusa told ZANIS in an interview today that government hopes to offset some pending payment arrears for farmers by the end of this week.
“As I am talking right now some more funds have just been made available and farmers across the country are receiving their dues,” he said.
Mr. Simuusa said farmers from Eastern, Copperbelt, Luapula, Western and North-Western provinces will be paid from the funds that have just been released.
He said all the farmers in the country will be paid by the end of December because irregularities that were experienced at some banks have been resolved.
Commenting on farmers that were beaten by police officers in Eastern Province for intending to stage demonstration over their dues, Mr. Simuusa said the farmers should not be used by politicians who want to politicise the issue to achieve their own agendas.
He has since urged farmers to be patient if they were to maximize profits in their produce.
The minister further stated that government attaches great importance to agriculture because farmers contribute significantly to national development.
Meanwhile, the head of Information, Education and Training at the Human Rights Commission Dorothy Mubemba said the commission will issue a comprehensive statement on the alleged beating of farmers after establishing the truth.