Former Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda says social media attacks on Agriculture Minister Dora Siliya are unfortunate.
“I have heard some uncharitable comments on social media about Hon. Dora Siliya. Yet Dora is a cerebral and the returns will be very salutary,” Chikwanda who served as Finance Minister in the Kaunda, Michael Sata and Edgar Chagwa Lungu’s regimes said.
And Chikwanda said Agriculture will only have a bright future if farmers grow their crops in ecological zones.
“Small Scale farmers, through improved agronomy, can increase yields without commensurate increase in costs; Then we will not need the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) and other gimmicks shrouded in irregularities”, the former Finance Minister said.
He added that forestly if adquately funded can create employment and generate exports.
“We mobilised money from the African Development Bank (AfDB) for cashew nuts which has huge potential. More money can be sourced but an institution such as the Zambia Forest and Forestry Industries Corporation (ZAFFICO) should run the scheme as they will be able to provide the seedlings to small scale farmers expeditiously”, Chikwanda said.