Analysis: NATHAN MULENGA
IN OUR effort to contribute to the country’s food security, we are opening up more virgin land in most of our units in order to increase the hectarage for crop production.
This will not only make the Zambia National Service (ZNS) increase the production of the traditional crop, maize, but it will also enable us to embrace the production of the high value crops like wheat and soya beans.
The wheat His Excellency President Edgar Lungu inspected recently is the first to be grown in Eastern Province.
this occasion, therefore, becomes special in that ZNS has become the pioneer of growing this high value crop in Eastern Province.
The two wheat fields that have been cultivated and irrigated under the centre pivot irrigation system cover 60 hectares, each bringing the total to 120 hectares.
It is important to mention that this unit becomes only the fourth in the ZNS to be installed with and have operational centre pivot irrigation system.
Others are ZNS Chanyanya in Kafue district, ZNS Munsakamba in Mkushi and ZNS airport farms in Lusaka.
I will hasten to mention here that the installation of nine more centre pivot irrigation systems: five at ZNS Munsakamba in Mkushi, three at ZNS Mpika in Muchinga Province and one at ZNS Mangango in Kaoma district of Western Province have reached an advanced stage.
The completion of the installation of these centre pivots will no doubt increase the production of high value crops of wheat and soya beans, ultimately making the service contribute significantly to the food security of our nation.
With these achievements, one can see that the focused government of President Lungu is not making pronouncements in vain, but is equally walking the talk, and as a service, we can only pledge our continued commitment to making agriculture the main thrust of the economy.
This is why I had the honour and privilege to invite His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia and commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, to inspect the field of wheat which is ready for harvest.
I just have a brief word to the officers, men and women of Lumezi unit. My fellow servicemen and women, never surge forward to be seen or noticed, never force yourself to take the front row.
Remain where you are, however remote, but stand resolute, committed, dedicated, patriotic, loyal and disciplined.
Hunger and thirst for your Zambia. Trust me, if only you can achieve these, your good deeds and works will speak for you and cause you to be visible to all the people of Zambia.
Here is your story, you all condemned this unit to be remote, but with a bit of transformation of the mind-set, the President, our commander-in-chief, in body and soul, has set food in this unit previously perceived to be unknown.
The author is Zambia National Service commandant.