By CHRISTINE MITTI
GOVERNMENT has cautioned farmers in the district from selling maize fields to foreigners.
Mbala District Commissioner Anne Paul urged farmers to reserve enough maize for household consumption and avoid selling all the maize to foreigners and some briefcase buyers.
She said, she is not refusing farmers from selling some of their maize, but that they should leave enough for home consumer.
“For example if you left five bags last year for home consumption, this year you should leave at least ten to twelve bags for home use,” Ms Paul said.
She said the country has insufficient maize because most small scale farmers decided to sell all the maize to foreign countries leaving themselves with nothing.
She said the government is providing farmers with affordable Inputs through Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP), so that they can grow enough maize and make the country food secure.
She said it was very embarrassing to see farmers crying of hunger when the government has empowered them with so many empowerment programs such as the food security pact (FSP), which is meant to help them reduces on hunger and poverty.
And Northern Province Principal Agriculture Officer Innocent Mulauzi, has appealed to farmers to wait for the government to announce the floor prices for the crops.
Mr Mulauzi said farmers should not sell out the maize fields before Government announces the flow price for the 2023 marketing season because they will disadvantage themselves by selling at a lower price.
Mr Mulauzi has said Government has procured 30 motorbikes in the first quarter of 2023 which have been distributed to all the 12 districts in the province to help enhance extension service delivery in the province.
Meanwhile, the Camp’s agriculture committee chairperson for Lunzua East Camp, Mr Darius Simutowe has assured Government that farmers in his camp will not sell maize to Tanzanian nationals, instead they will sell to the Zambian Government which helps and supports them with affordable inputs. – NAIS