The Food Reserve Agency (FRA) has paid over K90 million to farmers in Muchinga Province who started selling their maize to the agency three weeks ago.
FRA Muchinga Province Standards and Quality Officer, Robinson Nyambe says the disbursement of funds to farmers who sold their maize to FRA across the province has been going on well.
Mr Nyambe said in Isoka today, that the farmers have been responding well towards the pronouncement of selling maize to FRA in a bid to ensure food security in the country.
He said government is committed to paying farmers on time, adding that the early disbursement of funds to farmers is a motivational factor.
“The farmers here in Muchinga have been very productive especially in the 2022-2023 farming season because they know that government is quick to pay them”, he said.
And Muchinga Province Minister Henry Sikazwe is impressed with the operations of FRA in the region, stressing that government holds high significance to matters of food security in the country.
Mr Sikazwe stated that farmers who have been paid so far should utilise the money prudently through investing in agriculture as well as increasing productivity in the next farming season.
“I wish to re-emphasize that farmers should completely desist from selling their maize across the border of Tanzania because it is now illegal, ” he added.
Meanwhile, Evelyn Nakawala, one of the farmers in isoka district thanked government for adjusting the maize selling price to K280 per 50 kg bag.
Ms Nakawale said the increase in the maize price has motivated her to improve her yield with about 165 bags of maize sold so far.
She further extended her appreciation to the government for paying farmers on time in the 2022-2023 farming season.
The 54-year-old widow advised that government would do well if it invested in agriculture in rural areas to enable most people to become productive instead of perpetually depending on handouts.
Ms Nakawala said she only gets two bags of fertiliser from the government and buys 15 more bags of inputs using money she saves from selling maize to FRA, adding that her livelihood has been sustained because of agriculture.