President Edgar Chagwa Lungu speaks with Agriculture Minister Dora Siliya during the 112 th Zambia National Farmers Union annual General Congress at Mulungushi International Conference Center in Lusaka on Thursday, October 26,2017 -Picture by THOMAS NSAMA
FILE: President Edgar Chagwa Lungu speaks with Agriculture Minister Dora Siliya during the 112 th Zambia National Farmers Union annual General Congress at Mulungushi International Conference Center in Lusaka on Thursday, October 26,2017 -Picture by THOMAS NSAMA
MMD National Secretary Raphael Nakacinda has called on the Minister of Agriculture Dora Siliya to quickly sort out the challenges in the agriculture sector.

And some small scale farmers in Serenje and Mkushi Districts have described Agriculture Minister as a flop who should be taken to a different Ministry as she has failed to sort out the mess in the sector.

Speaking when he featured on Mkushi Radio Mr Nakacinda said the Minister should show the seriousness that the problems being faced by small scale farmers deserve.

He said farmers cannot be complaining on the same challenges every year when the President has appointed a Minister to sort out the challenges.

He said ensuring that the country has a functioning agriculture sector is the only way of uplifting people’s lives as most of the country’s population depend on the sector.

Meanwhile farmers in the province said the Minister should be replaced as the current minister had failed to deal with their challenges.

The farmers who contributed to the radio program via phone said the mess in the sector needed someone who appreciated the challenges in the sector something Siliya seems to be oblivious to.

They complained that they are still waiting for their money on their produce supplied to government last year.

A caller from Kapiri Everisto Mwenshi said even the e-voucher is a mess that continues to further confuse small scale farmers who still do not understand how to use it.

He said in his cooperative of 15 members only one person has been approved to recieve inputs adding that the challenges are not only in the district but in all the districts in the province.

He also said the Provincial Minister was segregating in his developmental projects as he was favouring the areas where his party was strong while neglecting opposition strong holds.

And another caller Mable Mwaba who also complained about the late payment of farmers as well as delivery of farming inputs said the area Members of Parliament where not helping as they were not talking on their behalf.

She said current MPs were now passengers at parliament buildings and eating chicken and chips when they should be the voices of the people who sent them to Lusaka to represent them.
In response Mr Nakacinda said voters should also start taking responsibility for their actions.

He said voters in some areas rejected people who had committed to working for them and opted to bring in people who just wanted allowances hence should not blame anyone but themselves.

He gave an example of Sydney Chisanga who was rejected in Mkushi South even when he was the best candidate after working with the people for two terms.

He said it was high time voters started scrutinizing candidates based on ability and put in competent individuals saying certain complaints will be a thing of the past.

The team has since left for Kapiri where they are suppose to hold party meetings with the district executive before proceeding to Kabwe.

And The Civil Society for Poverty Reduction in Eastern province has called on President Edgar Lungu to declare the 2017/2018 farmer input distribution exercise through the e-voucher system as a national disaster without any further delays.

CSPR Eastern Province Coordinator Maxson Nkhoma has noted with disappointment that the current happenings in the agriculture sector do not reflect any sign of government’s commitment towards walking the talk on economic diversification as alluded to by the President in his address to Parliament in October 2017.

Mr Nkhoma recalled that the head of state is on record when he addressed Parliament to have said that his government was going to diversify the economy from mining dependence to the agriculture sector by increasing government support towards the sector.

Mr Nkhoma said that CSPR is particularly concerned that the government has not started the distribution of farming inputs to farmers as of today, 12th December, 2017 a month after the rains had started, and when the Minister of Agriculture had addressed Parliament and indicated that the farming inputs distribution would start by 15th October, 2017.

Mr Nkhoma said that the delay in the distribution of farming inputs to farmers is a worse disaster when compared to army worms which can be easily eliminated using pesticides.

Mr Nkhoma stated that in view of numerous cries and complaints from the farmers over delayed farming inputs and late payment by the Food Reserve Agency, it has become increasingly very important for the President to address the nation and declare the 2017/2018 farmer input distribution exercise a national disaster so that emergency farmer rescue interventions can be explored.

Meanwhile, Some farmers in Shiwang’andu District in Muchinga Province have complained that the failure by the Food Reserve Agency to pay them their money has greatly affected their preparedness for this farming season.

The farmers have complained that since they delivered their maize to the FRA in August, they have not received anything from the agency.

One of the farmers Josephine Mumbi said that she cannot make her K400 counterpart contribution towards the e-voucher card because she have not been paid for the maize she supplied to the FRA.

Ms Mumbi said that she survives through farming and wonders if she will effectively participate in this farming season.

Another farmer Beatrice Nanyangwe of Mulanga village said that hunger is looming in the area because of the failure by the government to pay them.

And Grace Nyondo said that what the FRA has done is de-campaign President Edgar Lungu as it is showing that the government lacks seriousness in addressing issues affecting farmers in rural areas.

Grace Chileshe, a widow in Kalanguluka Village, said that she is at pains to see how the farmers are being treated by the government over their hard earned money.

The farmers have since appealed to President Lungu to intervene in the matter.

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52 COMMENTS

  1. The President like everyone in the country and PF including UPND that Dora has done one hell of a job
    Effortless, she has the charisma and there is NOTHING to worry about here

    She has this all sorted

    This is the Team to put ahead again in 2021 and for me beyond that

    I am not even a PF supporter

    Just a seeker of justice and the TRUTH

    Thanks

    BB2014,2016

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    • The truth does in fact hurt! I’m one of the few commentators that have been repeating the call for the President to release Dora as she failed starting with the maize floor price and this losing streak continued with the poorly planned and poorly implemented FISP programme.

      Had farmers been given a fair breakeven price of only K1.5 as opposed to K1.2 per kg for maize they would’ve been able to buy their own inputs without relying on this FISP nonsense!

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    • Dora Siliya was busy gallivanting in New York last year when the army worms ordered an attack on unsuspecting farmers!

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    • IT IS SHOCKING THAT ZAMBIA DOES NOT FEED THE WORLD: NO WAR, EMPTY FERTILE LAND, SEA-LIKE LAKES, RIVERS, VERY GOOD RAINFAL, YOUNG ENERGETIC MEN AND WOMEN, EIGHT BORDERS TO START WITH, MEMBERS OF SADC, COMMONWEALTH, COMESA, UN- NAME THEM WE ARE THERE. WHAT MORE DO WE NEED TO PRODUCE FOOD FOR ALL? ARE WE LACKING POLITICAL WILL?

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    • Lungu prefers to turn a blind eye to such mediocrity from people like Siliya
      Can he tell the nation and farmers why they are being sacrificed for Dorah?

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  2. “She has the charisma”, my foot; give me a break! These ‘political’ prostitutes who, in a well-ordered political set-up, should be no where near the corridors of power. But this is Zambia; land of the politically mediocre where anything can pass for leadership: even what we used call “mishanga boys”, in the good, old KK days.

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    • Charisma: some imagined thing that people want to use as an excuse for blindly following a useless person. EvEn Mushota has charisma in this case

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  3. Why do you point the finger of blame to the under performing minister…why do you ignore the lazy drunkard in the room who handpicks all these ministers. PF has smart MPs in the backbenches who are side-lined for empty tins like Kapata and that useless labour minister!!

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    • Very true my brother, the finger should firmly be pointed at the appointing authority! This lazy minister already failed last farming season and her poor record is there for all to see and yet shes still there and everyone including the president is beating about the bush in telling her to come to the party and perform for a change. I wonder what she has on him that he cant discipline her or replace her! No wonder Jay Jay says lazy drunkard, i mean how do you as a boss authorise leave for a minister of agriculture in a middle of a farming season? This president is a failure period!!!

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  4. I have been talking about this, I cited an example of Dora as having been misallocated to the Ministry of Agriculture. I mentioned that, that department needs someone highly competent on technical issues, knowledgeable and skilful in agriculture activities.

    Boy did I receive insults coming my way… I was being told she has a Diploma an MSc and some other esoteric qualifications.

    Having those little cited qualifications only gives you the right to knock on the door not to enter. Look at where we are now.

    The president is now forced to call this a NATIONAL DISASTER, so that we can get some aid from some country somewhere and release some internal funds.

    We are a country not a household, we should have economic eyes to see 20 years down the line… Dora cannot do that… Look at…

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  5. (cont–) what is happening now. The president is forced to call it a national disaster so some AID money can be released from somewhere.

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  6. Last year same crap again.
    Farmers haven’t been paid and E vouchers no money.
    Crap minister as well as crap comments from mushota… job well done my ass.

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    • These are the wasted years indeed…Lazy Lungu and tins can plant dodgy viruses and bugs on my devices to put me off posting on poorly secured LT website but I will find a way!!

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  7. The farmers have spoken, either ECL trusts his failed Minister OR he will trust the farmer’s complaints who are highlighting that Dora has not delivered. And evidence provided speaks for itself.

    ECL has a choice to correct his mistake with honor and dignity.

    Not worthy further commenting, waiting for ECL`s move.

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  8. She cannot cope as managing The ministry of Agriculture is not as easy, or the same as sniffing around for bent contract’s, or illegally selling overinflated maize to Malawi.
    Meantime Ba Jona ba le konkafye munuma, whilst getting a hefty cut!

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    • Ask Rupiah he delivered Eastern Province to the drunkard Lazy Lungu…the man has surrounded himself with MMD bandits with zero loyalty to himself or PF!!

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  9. No proper people in positions, no policies, no vision. This agriculture saga sums up everything to do with the PF regime.

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    • @15 Harold.. YOU HAVE SUMMED IT WELL!! In those days we could add the late Augustine Lungu’s joke “NO STYLE, NO QUALITY”!!

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    • The things PF excel at are borrowing, looting via over inflated contracts and organising violent thugs to gag people………the last one they are particularly good………

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  10. If you are bankrupt how do you buy things. The government is no different, there is no money for FRA no money for FISP no money for CBU , wages not paid, now we are aski g for AID by declaring a national disaster.
    Its not a national disaster it is poor planning
    FAILING TO PLAN is PLANNING TO FAIL

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  11. Ther are two cardinal ministries with two useless ministers who should be replaced!

    MINSTRY OF AGRICULTURE
    MINSTRY OF EDUCATION

    EDGAR, PLEASE ACT!!!!

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  12. How much is the State spending on FISP? It is probably in the range of K1.6 billion correct? Now had the State just given the farmers a good floor price of K1.5 they wouldve managed to procure inputs- an increase of only 30Ngwee from K1.2/kg the govt wouldve spent only K150 million for the allocated 500,000tons. Now they are in a double dillemma, they have to fund the FISP programme and as a result they are unable to finish paying some of the farmers that supplied to FRA! What type of people have we got in the govt kanshi??? I’m so dissapointed with the govt to be honest, come 2021 I’m sorry my whole family is voting for Sinkamba!

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    • For clarity’s sakes that is an EXTRA K150million above the allocation had the State procured at K1.5 instead of K1.2/Kg.

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    • Very simple mathematics you have tabulated there which unfortunately the whole cabinet including their chairman did not see! We are in serious trouble for sure. These people are so lazy to think and project for the future. The restriction of cargo movements is another example. Grown men or so called leaders sitting in a room to literally decide to slow down the economy! Some of these people’s decisions are just criminal to say the least. Now they failed to give the farmer a break even price and have failed to pay them on that low price and to make matters worse they cant provide inputs through FISP all whatever e-voucher they have created! Total mess and the kateka is there arms folded cant provide direction to his incompetent ministers.

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  13. If the farmers had been paid on time, they could have purchased their own inputs. That’s why it is very difficult to do business with government if you have no connections with those near the corridors of power. Some farmers have been waiting for their payments from August sure??And if the same farmers start exporting that maize to congo DR there would be shortages of mealie meal back home thereby automatically raising the price of the essential commodity, in the end it is the poor to feel the pinch. No funds to pay farmers, no funds to pay students’ meal allowances but endless trips for government officials.

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  14. Bonehead Mushota once again proving she has nothing between her ears, let alone a PHD!!! No need for her to smoke anything.

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  15. Masalamuso is spot on

    Dora will not be fired and she has no blame to carry

    If the Treasury is flat broke where will she get the money from ?

    FRA has paid k100m with K400m outstanding. Transporters have stopped ferrying maize due to non-payment and maize is getting soaked in remote locations.

    FISP can be easily activated by putting K1700 onto each e voucher against the K400 each farmer has put in. However there is just no money.

    We were relying on zama zama money the IMF were supposed to bring. Now they have refused and we are stuck.

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    • Its a question of priorities. Thats why the finger must not be on Dora alone but the appointing authority as well. After the disaster of last farming season, it should have waken them up to prioritise this sector and make sure all is available for the farmers. But no, there is no money for this important sector close to people’s heart but there is money to fly around the world. There is money to buy so called custom made wheel barrows and land cruisers. There is money to spend on a fruitless excise regarding Zambia’s status at ICC. Theres money to be paying Councillors when their roles already allowed them to keep day jobs while serving the wards they come from. The list is endless on how funds are misappropriated.

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    • In the meantime some useless excuse for a President is busy Gallivanting all over the Globe, as if he has ants in his pants!!
      If the Drunken Lazy Jona,only sat down to do some work, rather than always focusing on Drinking & Disco dancing, he would be proactive summon his useless “[email protected]” of a minister & demand she works, gets on top of this saga, OR she will be dragged by the ear & thrown out of his cabinet.
      Unfortunately we are talking about Ba Jona!!
      Jona does not know whether he’s coming or going, unless its to do with corruption!

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  16. we told ba Lungu that this crzy voucher can’t work but he listerned to this minister umulandu na koswe mupoto.He made a good decision at first alas he was convinced by small koswes.lol

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  17. First they should fire the PS and all the technocrats whose responsibility is to oversee the farmer support program. Problem in Zambia is we have problems letting go of incompetent people.

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    • They’re not incompetent, but educated who are misapplying their knowledge. One DACO has just committed suicide after misapplying money meant for FISP.

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    • Farmers need to learn consequences of poor choices when voting.
      It surely comes back to bite!

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  18. Just as at the RATSA, there’s a lot of corruption in the chain of farming input distribution. There people who want to confuse things so that in the process they make money for themselves. If a system has been introduced, we don’t need a president to be in charge of operations. People are employed and paid to do a job not to make extra cash by exploiting the system. Much as the government is to blame it can only do so much because everything depends on the people employed to carry out the job. It happened with the army worms pesticides distribution. ….we’re made to buy the same stuff from the shops because the station officer deliberately stayed away from the station in the effort of forcing us to buy the stuff from the shops where he’d taken it.

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    • Now whose supposed to discipline that station officer? What we are crying for is a lack of seriousness by the minister in charge. Obviously Dora cant be everywhere distributing inputs but the buck stops at her to put up a workable plan and to ensure the so called station officers do their jobs. Above all its up to the president to ensure his minister is on top of things period! You and me are just mere people however we have put people in authority to sort this mess out for the greater population to benefit. What do they understand by governance kanshi?? If all we do is blame the middleman who is going to remove those so called middlemen?? If they cant, then maybe we have the wrong people running our affairs!

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