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Zambia wins fight against armyworms

KELVIN CHONGO, Lusaka
GOVERNMENT has declared Zambia safe from armyworms that destroyed thousands of hectares of maize in more than half of the country’s 10 provinces.
Minister of Agriculture Dora Siliya said in an interview yesterday that the armyworms have been completely eliminated.
“The armyworms that posed a big threat to the nation’s food security after coming with mass destruction were faced head-on and have been eliminated,” she said.
Ms Siliya attributed the successful fight against the pests to the urgent and collective efforts by all stakeholders.
The Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) has said crop damage on the Copperbelt had reached alarming levels before the armyworms were finally contained.
When the armyworms broke out, President Lungu directed the DMMU under the Office of the Vice-President and the Zambia National Service (ZNS) and Zambia Air force (ZAF) to join the Ministry of Agriculture in an emergency operation to curb the spread of the pests, which had invaded some districts on the Copperbelt, Luapula, Eastern, Lusaka and Central provinces.
Government distributed free pesticides to farmers countrywide to effectively eradicate the menace.


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