Over 1,000 farmers in Solwezi district have been blocked from collecting their farm inputs by North Western province union corporative for unknown reasons.
Government has delivered the required amount of fertiliser and seeds for all the farmers in the district and appointed the cooporative union as the warehouse manager.
But the corporative the union has refused to release the inputs to farmers, claiming that Government has not paid for the warehouse facility and transport refund the move which forced farmers to match to the district commissioner’s office to seek for help.
In presence of the farmers, acting Solwezi district commissioner Chipawa Chipawa contacted the cooporative union chairperson Ammon Kyanguba but could not turn up at his office. Later the district commissioner in company of the district agriculture coordinator Miyobo Shimabale and the farmers followed Mr Kyanguba to0 his office only to find that he was not in the office. And officers found at the cooporative union office were at pain to explain to the district commissioner why farmers were not given the inputs as the warehouse was locked.
District agriculture coordinator Shimabale explained that out of the over 12,000 farmers in the district only a few were remaining to be cleared but the warehouse manager is taking the leverage out of the remaining number of farmers.
“The programme is almost complete we are at 90 per cent, and we understand that he (the warehouse manager) has a challenge of paying the loaders and others but our appeal really is that farmers should not be disadvantaged”, Mr Shimabale explained. Meanwhile Mr Chipawa has with immediate effect directed the corporative union to release the inputs to the farmers.
“As Government we have done our best to deliver the inputs on time, now it makes a sad reading to note that we still have such lapses in the delivery of the inputs.
This is uncalled for and as district administration we will not tolerate such, ” he said.
The North Western Province corporative union management could not be immediately reached for a comment.