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State warns against harassment of workers

GOVERNMENT will not condone harassment of civil servants by political parties or any individual in the course of executing their duties, Minister of Agriculture Given Lubinda has warned.
Mr Lubinda was reacting to reports of a quarrel between Central provincial agriculture co-ordinator Adrin Nansungwe and United Party for National Development (UPND) Central Province youth chairman Milner Mwanakampwe over the electronic voucher (e-voucher) system.
“It is not pleasing to hear that civil servants are being harassed as we have the responsibility and duty to protect them,” Mr Lubinda said.
He said when he paid a courtesy call on Central Province Minister Davies Chisopa on Saturday that civil servants are employed to implement government programmes.
Mr Lubinda said the electronic voucher programme was tabled in Parliament where political parties are represented and that any concerns should be addressed to him.
“We do not expect such behaviour [harassment of civil servants] from people fighting over government programmes. It is best for those who have concerns to address them to the provincial minister.
“Beating or insulting public officers is not acceptable and people should understand that they are there to work for the government as they do not come up with such programmes,” Mr Lubinda said.
He urged civil servants to be more tolerant to people who are against government programmes saying not everyone will appreciate what the State is doing.
Featuring on a live programme on KNC Radio last Tuesday, Mr Mwanakampwe alleged that Government had reduced the number of beneficiaries for this season’s Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) in Central Province.
“The total number of farmers in Kabwe district is 31,464 but the active number of farmers that have been participating from 2011 to about 2013 is about 28,464 but…when Dr Nansungwe came in as PACO, she reduced the number of farmers for this farming season, 2015/2016, by 7,000 to 21,464…,” Mr Mwanakampwe said.
But Mr Nansungwe rubbished the allegation.