‘Don’t panic over chemicals’

CENTRAL Province permanent secretary Chanda Kabwe has urged farmers in the region not to panic or resort to using uncertified chemicals to rid their fields of armyworms because Government has supplied enough chemicals.
Mr Kabwe said since the outbreak of the armyworms, Central Province has received over 10,000 litres of chemicals and the latest consignment of 500 litres was received on Friday.
He said in an interview yesterday that the fight against armyworms in the province is progressing well as several fields have already been sprayed in the affected districts.
“As a province, we are on the ground. We have stepped up the fight against the armyworms and we are getting there because we have enough chemicals,” Mr Kabwe said.
He said Chibombo remains the worst hit district by the invasion of the pests and a lot of affected fields are being sprayed following the deployment of Zambia National Service personnel.
Mr Kabwe urged farmers not to lose hope because Government is supporting them to safeguard their crops.
He said farmers should not resort to using doom or any chemicals which experts have not prescribed but should approach agriculture extension officers for recommended pesticides.
“Government is putting interventions in place to help our farmers and there is no need for them to lose hope,” Mr Kabwe said.
He warned officials in the Ministry of Agriculture who may attempt to sell chemicals for eradicating armyworms against doing so because they risk being dismissed if found wanting.
Mr Kabwe urged members of Parliament, councillors and other stakeholders to remain committed in fighting the destructive pests.

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