Byta FM Radio Station has partnered with government to fight the effects of climate change, pledging K72,000 worth of airtime to prepare farmers ahead of this year’s agriculture season.
This follows a clarion call by Southern Province Deputy Permanent Secretary, Kennedy Mubanga, on the need for media to increase messages on climate change, to help farmers with information amidst the prevailing harsh weather conditions.
According to Mubanga, the Choma-based radio station, whose primary broadcast focus is Agriculture and Health, is the first to respond positively to the call to sensitise on changes in the weather pattern.
Mubanga was speaking at Byta FM Radio, Monday, during the launch of the month-long program.
He commended Byta FM for remaining relevant to the farming community in the region and beyond.
“…you should be proud as Byta FM that made a useful contribution. You see right now we are grappling with the effects of a mismatch in the planting season which he had last year. So of the most farmers do not have maize stock and we are riding on the strategic maize which we keep through FRA,” Mubanga said.
Mubanga described the radio station as a farmer’s friend giving true meaning to its Motto “First in Agriculture and Health.”
And speaking earlier, Southern Province Agriculture Coordinator, Dr Max Choombe says the airtime had come at the right time when the province needed a platform to reach out to farmers on climate change.
He said he was optimistic that the province would have a bumper harvest due to the free platform provided to educate farmers on the right kind of seed and time to plant.
“A loss of time for farmers in the planting window is loss in their yield per hectare. But if they get the message to plant on time and plant the right seed, then we are expecting a bumper harvest as Southern Province,” said Dr Chombe.
The official launch of the programme which will run from October 16 to November 15, 2019, was also attended by Southern Province Senior Meteorological Officer, Davies Langeni.
Langeni commended Byta FM for the airtime and disclosed that his department had for the first time translated messages on weather patterns in seven local languages to reach all farmers.
He added that the platform provided by the radio station will enhance the spreading of the messages to its relevant consumers.
Byta FM will be working with experts under the departments of meteorology and agriculture respectively to create 60 seconds and sometimes 5 minutes feature broadcasts on climate change and interventions.