Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Over 1000 families in Musungwa area face hunger
By Gift Chanda in Itezhi-tezhi
Wed 13 Nov. 2013, 14:00 CAT

OVER 1,000 households in chief Musungwa's area in Itezhi-tezhi will require food aid this year, the traditional leader has revealed. The chiefdom could struggle to feed itself after a poor maize harvest that was recorded due to poor weather conditions experienced in the last farming season.

"We had a big problem of floods in the last farming season and this will affect the lives of many people here," chief Musungwa of the Ila people of Itezhi-tezhi district said when agriculture deputy minister Greyford Monde paid a courtesy call on him at his palace on Saturday.
He said there was need for the government to quickly send relief food to the area to prevent starvation.

Chief Musungwa said most households in the area risked starving if the relief food was not sent before the onset of the rains as they did not have enough food to last until the next harvest.

"The food should be sent as quickly as possible because the situation in our area is already desperate," he said.

"People out there will starve. Maize production was very poor this year because of the floods and so the government needs to move in as quickly as possible because once it starts running heavily, the roads will become impassable."

But Monde said the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit had already approved the quantity of relief maize for the area.

He also assured farmers of early delivery of inputs. Meanwhile, 10,980 bags of D Compound fertiliser have been delivered to Itezhi-tezhi district.

Monde said the government wants to ensure that it cuts down on late delivery of inputs this farming season to boost crop output next year.

Earlier, Monde assured chief Musungwa that the Zambia Wildlife Authority would be engaged to address the human-animal conflict in his chiefdom.

The chief said the problem of human-animal conflict in the area had escalated, threatening agricultural output as wild animals terrorised people's fields.

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