President Edgar Lungu has directed that Government agencies charged with the responsibility to distribute seed
This following a three-day tour of three rural towns of Lusaka last week.
President Lungu has also directed that fertiliser dealers ensures that these agro commodities reach all corners of the country within one week.
President Lungu has further directed that Ministry of Agriculture officials in all districts ensure that farmers are accessing the commodities without undue delays and that all District Commissioners and Provincial Permanent Secretaries give a daily account of the status of the agro input distribution.
The Head of State has also directed the Treasury and Ministry of Agriculture to ensure that financial obligations due to suppliers are met expeditiously.
“The President regrets that his findings in some of the areas that he toured when he inspected distribution depots in Luangwa, Rufunsa and Chirundu show evidence of negligence, incompetence and possible sabotage by some civil servants charged with the responsibility to distribute the inputs,” a State House statement read.
“The President is disappointed that in some cases, both basal and top dressing fertilisers have been distributed but seed has not yet arrived thereby undermining the chances of a good harvest next year. The President has since warned of drastic action against any civil servant failing to discharge their responsibilities effectively in this regard.”
“This situation is unacceptable and tough measures will be instituted against officers responsible,” The President said.
President Lungu has however assured agro farmers countrywide that he has taken personal interest to ensure that the input distribution exercise succeed so that the country can surpass the 2016 harvest.
“I have been informed by weather experts that this year, we have been blessed with good rainfall throughout the season and we ensured that fertiliser and seed procurement processes were done on time,” President Lungu said.
“I cannot accept any excuses for poor performance that might lead to a poor harvest. I will be taking decisive action against any civil servant at any level who will be seen to be standing in our quest to ensure sustainable food security. I expect all civil servants to take heed of this warning and ensure that they execute the agro input distribution exercise expeditiously,” he said.
President Lungu toured developmental projects in Luangwa, Rufunsa and Chirundu districts of Lusaka last week on 14th, 15th and 16th December, 2016 respectively.