By Nation Reporter
THE reduction in maize smuggling in Northern Province which has been rampant in the recent past, has cheered Northern Province Minister Brian Mundubile.
Mr Mundubile said he was happy that smuggling of the grain had reduced through the efforts of the security wings who had been very alert in managing the exit points to make sure that they curbed the illegal activities of maize smuggling .
“Maize smuggling in Northern Province has reduced. I commend the security wing who have been very alert in managing the exit points to make sure that they curb the illegal activities of maize smuggling,” he said.
Mr Mundubile further said that the smuggling of the commodity triggered an indication of the market and he realised that there was a big market for the crop, hence smuggling and that his government through partnership with other copperatives they would increase the production by growing more maize and other crops to open markets to Congo, Luanda and other countries to freely import maize .
He added that smuggling of the staple food would come to pass, and Governemt would stop deploying security wings to stop people from entering the country to import the commodity as long as they have proper documentation and payment of the necessary taxes so that the country may go forward.
Meanwhile, Mr Mundubile, who is also Mporokoso Parliamentarian, said Government is currently working on a robust program to electrify the rural areas in Northern Province to allow students in the remote areas have access to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Schools.
He stated that the initiative came after seeing that a number of students in rural areas had experienced a number of challenges as they could not have access to ICT programs which Government had introduced in schools.
Mr Mundubile said in finding the solution, the Ministry of Energy through ZESCO had embarked on a robust program of rural electrification in areas which were disadvantaged.
He stated that he was happy that the rural electrification program was going on very well in a number of places but that there was still a lot to be done.
Mr Mundubile further stated that President Edgar Lungu alluded that it was time to stop relying on hydro-power which when water levels in the Kariba dam were low, it resulted in low generation of power but that it was better to start looking to renewable energy such as solar energy.
“There are a number of private entities which has come on board to generate power and the situation we have is while the Rural Electrification Program was going on, the solution to moving forward is to begin to look at the renewable energy solar and the number of options that Government would consider were off grid solar. As a nation, we are experiencing challenges with power on the grid,” Mr Mundubile said.
He stated that by using a number of programs going on solar, the country could regenerate power by using solar and localise the distribution of power within the areas which were not electrified so that even the pupils in schools would not be left out when it came to ICT programs.