Kasempa UPND member of parliament Brenda Tambatamba says the slow pace at which the E- voucher is being implemented in her constituency will lead to severe hunger next year because farmers have no money.
And Mpungu Ward induna, Mumba Lukulu Wakufita has complained that government is not helping the farmers, adding that they have suffered due to the delay in accessing their farming inputs and late payment of their monies.
Speaking when she toured Mpungu Ward, Tambatamba expressed concern with the slow pace at which the E- voucher was being implemented in Kasempa.
She added that this would lead to severe hunger next year because farmers had no money.
“The poor implementation of E-voucher is an imminent threat to food security and livelihood in the constituency. The majority of farmers here have not yet accessed farming inputs for the year 2018-2019 farming season under the e-voucher system. Let me tell you that the slow pace at which this E-voucher is being implemented here in Kasempa would lead to severe hunger next year because farmers have no money and they are waiting to receive their inputs which has totally delayed,” she said.
Tambatamba said the people in her constituency depended on agriculture as their livelihood because there was no industry in the area.
She said government’s failure to give the farmers inputs on time, was killing them.
“You see people here depend on agriculture. This is their source of living and if government is failing to give such people the inputs on time then, it means they are killing these farmers. Look, Kasempa district was established in 1902 and it has continued on a development advocacy agenda to free itself from constraints including poor road network across the 22 wards. This is an acceptable and government should not treat its people like this,” she said.
And Tambatamba appealed to the Food Reseve Agency to quickly pay the farmers in the area what was due to them.
“I want to appeal to this FRA that it should quickly move in and start paying these farmers their monies. We have a lot of farmers here in Kasempa who have not been paid. The farmers cannot do anything. They cannot pay for their children’s school fees. They cannot buy fertilizer because they do not have money. FRA has not yet paid them.
Why should farmers be subjected to such treatment where they are made to wait for their monies? My appeal once again to both FRA and minister of agriculture is that, can you give farmers what belongs to them,” she said.
Tambatamba further questioned when government would work on the Kasempa- Mumbwa and Kasempa-Kaoma roads.
“Some of the key roads infrustracture brought to the attention of government that had not been worked on are the long standing Kasempa-Mumbwa road and Kasempa- Kaoma road. Both roads are the shorter gateways to Lusaka, Central and Western Provinces which when worked on, can offer market for agriculture expansion. When is this government going to work on it?” Tambamtamba asked.
Meanwhile, the area Induna, Mumba Lukulu Wakufita said farmers in Kasempa had suffered due to the delay in accessing their farming inputs, as well as, late payments of their monies.
He complained that the PF government was killing farmers instead of helping them.
“Honorable Tambatamba, we the farmers here in Kasempa have suffered due to the delay in accessing our farming inputs by this government and also the late payment of our monies. Most of these farmers you are seen here honorable, cannot do anything at the moment because FRA has not paid them their monies. We do not know when we shall have our monies. We have not been told anything and we are just waiting,” he complained.
“We are complaining bitterly because this government is not helping us farmers. They are killing us. We depend on farming and so if they (FRA) cannot pay us then how are we going to survive? How are we going to pay our children’s school fees? How are we going to pay for e-voucher? We need to be helped because we are suffering.”
Tambatamba is in her constituency to interact and check on some of the projects being undertaken in the area.