News

State delivers last batch of e-vouchers

CATHERINE MUMBA, Lusaka
MINISTER of Agriculture Dora Siliya says the last batch of 45,000 electronic vouchers for farmers have been delivered.
And the Ministry of Agriculture has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with China Railways Seventh Group to carry out a feasibility study on two farm blocks in Northern Province.
Speaking during a press briefing on Tuesday, Ms Siliya said it is unfortunate that the e-voucher cards have reached the farmers late.
Ms Siliya assured farmers that Government will ensure the e-voucher is received as early as April in the next farming season.
“Zanaco delivered the last batch yesterday [Monday ] and we regret the delay. We hope our farmers will understand us because this delay was largely because we are coming from an election,” she said.
Ms Siliya said D Compound fertiliser has also been distributed to farmers while Urea will be delivered to them soon.
And the Ministry of Agriculture signed an MoU with China Railways Seventh Group to carry out a feasibility study on two farm blocks in Northern Province.
Ms Siliya said the farm blocks are sitting on 240, 000 hectares of land in Luwingu and Mporokoso districts.
“Our friends from China will help us look into issues of planning. We want to put in place an agriculture infrastructure development plan for farm blocks to make agriculture a serious business that will bring income to the country,” she said.
Meanwhile, chief agriculture research officer at the Ministry of Agriculture Mweshi Mukanga said armyworms are said to attack after 10 years, and it should be established why they have affected the country barely four years after the challenge was experienced.
Mr Mukanga said the Zambia Agriculture Research Institute will also carry out tests on boom paste and other chemicals that farmers claim have managed to kill the pest.
The institute is set to conduct a pest risk analysis to look at the pathways of armyworms into Zambia to determine how they can be prevented in future.




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