The National Democratic Congress says agriculture is its primary focus because it is the only sector that will restore Zambians’ dignity, says secretary general Mwenya Musenge.
And Musenge says his party is not in a hurry to offload its manifesto because research is still underway on the document, which will focus on value addition to agricultural products.
Musenge said most Zambians were too dependent on social employment, justifying the need to utilise the agricultural sector as a means of restoring Zambians’ dignity.
He added that the NDC would intensify its focus on exploiting the agricultural sector to help create more jobs for Zambians as the sector had become a disaster under President Edgar Lungu’s administration.
“Our inclination as NDC is agriculture. And we feel that we really need to prioritise that and find ways and means of how we can be able to improve this sector. And also, see how the product has to be produced so that value can be added to it. And we feel that it is only this sector that can create massive employment for the Zambian people. And we believe it is only this sector that can bring dignity back to this country because as at now, most of us, most Zambians are socially dependent on being employed. And the employers of today take advantage of us, therefore, we become so vulnerable,” Musenge observed in an interview with News Diggers!
“And also we are looking at how we can come up with the food production industry that should be able to add value to what is produced by the farmers. So, there are a lot of plants that are being produced in the country that require adding value to them, and by simply doing that, you create more employment.”
And Musenge said the NDC is not in a hurry to offload its manifesto because research is still underway on the document, which will focus on value addition to agricultural products.
“The launching of the manifesto and the launching of the party will be done at the same time. So, there is a lot of work that we are doing on the ground, but I can confidently say that a lot of work has been done; a lot of research has been done. As NDC, we take time to research on the issues really affecting the people around the country. We are not in a hurry to offload a document that has not been carefully prepared. We want it to be a document that should take into account all the necessary issues. There are a number of areas that require to be looked into, and [to] come up with [a] party position that will be embraced by Zambians,” Musenge said.
He insisted that only the agriculture sector can create massive employment for the country.
“Agriculture under the Lungu administration has become a disaster. The E-voucher just added more suffering to Zambians. Delayed payment of their products is also a thorn in the flesh, the delayed distribution of farming inputs has also affected the farmers. So, these are some of the issues that we really want to look at. And I think we are also considering that apart from the FISP programme, there can also be another way that government can liaise that those farmers who have the ability to produce can be allowed to access some of the implements more than what is being given as FISP. This is good for food production in the country,” said Musenge.