Army worms, stock borers invade maize fields in Mazabuka
By Staff Reporter
Army worms and stock borers have invaded maize fields in Mazabuka, Southern Province.
According to Zambia News & Information Service (ZANIS), Mazabuka District Commissioner Jane Chirwa confirmed the pests invaded fields destroying crops in some parts of the district.
Chirwa said government had since dispatched 150 litres of chemicals to assist about 6,000 farmers from 20 agricultural camps whose fields had been affected.
“Only two camps out of the entire district have not been affected by the pests,”she said.
Chirwa added that the distribution of the free chemicals goes to show the commitment government attaches to the agriculture sector in order to improve food security at household level.
“According to agriculture experts, about 4,700 hecterage of maize fields have been affected,” she said.
Meanwhile, Gemcanton Investment Holdings Limited has donated 500 liters of pesticides valued at K140, 000 to help eradicate the fall army worms that have ravaged hectares of crop fields in Lufwanyama District.
And Copperbelt Permanent Secretary Bright Nundwe has urged the Ministry of Agriculture in the province to work hard and ensure that farmers were sensitized about fall army worms as they had potential to affect the food production in the country.
“It is the responsibility of the ministry of agriculture to teach farmers especially peasant farmers on how various pesticides are to be used to avoid over application and under application,” he said.
Nundwe thanked Gemcanton for coming on board in ensuring that food security in the district is not affected.
And Gemcanton Investment Holdings Corporate Affairs Manager Davy Phiri said the donation was one the main projects in the Corporate Social Responsibility programme of the company in the area.
Speaking at the same event Chieftainess Shimukunami of the Lamba people thanked Gemcanton for the gesture and assured that it would help enhance food security for most households in the chiefdoms.