Eastern Province Deputy Permanent Secretary Beenzu Chikaba says government is committed to uplifting the lives of small scale entrepreneurs.
Speaking when she officiated at the Launch of the Entrepreneurship Program for farmers under Kasamanda Agri-Business Initiative (KADI) in Chief Msoros area in Mambwe District, Mrs. Chikaba said government is aware of the potential that small entrepreneurs hold towards economic development of the country.
Mrs. Chikaba said Mambwe district is faced with many developmental challenges ranging from geographical and social factors.
She said because of these challenges most communities in the district are vulnerable to food deficiencies as most of the areas tend to be flooded during the rainy season making it impossible for some farmers to cultivate enough crops.
Mrs. Chikaba however stated that it was gratifying to see that communities through government are working with other partners in ensuring that poverty is reduced.
She noted that government is keen on partnering with other stakeholders in matters of development in its quest to deliver development to all parts of the country.
She stated that the ministry of agriculture in partnership with the UNDP is currently working on ways of introducing other forms of farming such as bee keeping.
Mrs. Chikaba thanked ADRA Zambia and its partners UNWFP for its continued partnership and commitment in the development rural areas.
And ADRA Zambia Country Director Tembekile Musvosvi has said her organization with its partners World Food Program have adopted government’s strategies for accelerating rural development.
Mrs. Musvosvi said ADRA Zambia is committed to improving the living standards of people through promoting agriculture development, rural enterprising and providing supporting infrastructure in rural areas.
She said her organizations involvement with the community is further aimed at reducing the dependency on handout but giving life skills in agriculture and enterprise in order to reduce poverty at household level.
She explained that poverty leaves in rural parts of Zambia was still high as compared to urban centres of the country.
During the official Launch of the Kasamanda warehouse yesterday Mrs. Musvosvi said her organization was ready to give seven oil processors, seven tri-cycles, seven bean threshers and seven groundnut shellers to clients who have been equipped and have met the criteria.
She said the benefiting farmers have already been trained and equipped with processing and business skills to enable them start their own businesses.
Mrs. Musvosvi however reminded the beneficiaries to use the machines properly and ensure that they pay back the loans in time so that others can benefit equally.
She said the warehouse which has been built at Kasamanda was done with the help of the communities in four wards who contributed 25 % of upfront materials.
Mrs. Musvosvi said the opening of the warehouse means improved market for the farmers in the area.
Meanwhile, World Food Program Country (WFP)Director Aurore Rusiga has expressed happiness at the opening of the warehouse as it will help them advance their Home Grown School Feeding Program.
Mrs. Rusiga said WFP is currently running a project of feeding school going children adding that farmers have been given an opportunity to sell their crops at schools close to them.
She said the project of the warehouse is expected to support primary schools in the district and act as a catalyst for development and sustainable business investments.
Mrs. Rusiga said t WFP has been training farmers in business skills, seed preservation methods and price negotiation skills in order to help them grow their farming businesses.
Mrs. Rusiga stated that the opening of the warehouse is aimed at linking small scale farmers to the market.
She further pledged her organizations continued support to small scale farmers as partners in development.