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Farmers urged to open bank accounts

HENRY SINYANGWE, Kasama
NORTHERN Province agriculture coordinator Andrew Banda has urged small-scale farmers to open bank accounts to avoid long queues at commercial banks when receiving payment for maize supplied to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA).
Mr Banda said in an interview yesterday that farmers have not been able to access their money on time because they have to wait for their names to be called for them to receive payment over the counter at respective banks.
Mr Banda said this has resulted in long queues at various commercial banks.
“Farmers are forced to wait for hours before they can be called as they are given schedules and they have to be physically there, which would not be the case if they had personal accounts with the banks,” Mr Banda said.
Long queues of farmers waiting to be paid for maize supplied to FRA have characterised various commercial banks.
Mr Banda said out of a total of  K206.4 million owed to farmers in Northern Province, Government has released K131.7 million to pay farmers.
Mr Banda also said opening bank accounts has advantages because the farmers are guaranteed that their money is safe.
Mr Banda also said Government has released K16 million out of the K39 million owed to the farmers in Kasama.
He also said Government will in the next two weeks conduct a crop forecast survey for the region.
He also said maize is currently at germination stage in the region.

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