Over 5,000 farmers in Kaoma district have failed raise and pay the K400 contribution to enable them benefit from the Farmer Inputs Support Program (FISP)
According to various experts’ opinion agriculture is an economic model for Zambia’s growth hence the need to encourage rural development of the sector which employs 60 percent of the population of the country.
Also for economy of Zambia to find agro products in which it can have a long comparative advantage like production of animal proteins from soya beans and maize whose production costs have started to decline.
Last year in October the World Bank has advised Zambia’s government to consider limiting of the Farmer Input Support Program (FISP) for three years to allow farmers graduate out of the system. According to calculations Zambia spends a lot on the FISP but farmers do not graduate.
This year Food Reserve Agency (FRA) has not paid farmers their dues for maize supplied to the agency. Consequence of this was the fact that about 5,000 farmers in Kaoma district have failed raise and pay the K400 contribution to enable them benefit from the Farmer Inputs Support Program (FISP).
In an interview with the Zambia News and Information Services (ZANIS) Kaoma District Commissioner Kennedy Mubanga said about this problem in agricultural sector. The District Commissioner said out of 9,860 farmers on FISP only 4000 managed to pay the K400 required fee to benefit from FISP. Mr Mubanga told that he personally knows of a large number of farmers who could not make contributions due to the lack of resources.
He assured farmers that government will allocate them material support soon and they should not worry. District Commissioner Kennedy Mubanga added that the other day Minister of Agriculture Micheal Katambo told him that government had released K30 million to pay farmer’s dues adding that Kaoma District would be a priority.