Chiradzulu South Legislator Joseph Mwanamvekha has expressed concerns over the slow pace at which the Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP) is being rolled out in most areas of the southern region.
Mwanamvekha, who is also Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesperson on Finance, lodged the complaint in Parliament on Friday where he asked the responsible minister of agriculture as to when AIP suppliers will start selling inputs in the region.
He queried: “My concern was that Admarc and other suppliers to AIP they had opened a number of markets in my area, they were supposed to open depots in Kalo, Namitambe, Mapesi, Namitambo and many other areas.”
“Now what I have noted is that even though they have opened the depots, there is no fertilizer and people are not buying,” said Mwanamvekha.
The lawmaker has since cautioned that any delay will result into acute food insecurity as most parts of southern region are receiving rainfall and this is the best time to plant.
“And yet in the southern region as you are aware that the rain season has already started, as I speak now people are planting, so my question was what is the minister doing about it?
“Because if we supply the inputs in good time it means people in my constituency and most parts of the southern regions might not have proper harvest this season,” said Mwanamvekha.
Meanwhile, the responsible minister of agriculture Lobin Lowe has acknowledged the existence of the challenges and assured the lawmakers that government will dress the issues raised accordingly.