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We are capable of feeding ourselves and earning an income from farming, President Edgar Lungu says



ZAMBIANS are capable of feeding themselves and earning an income if they concentrate on farming, President Edgar has said.

The head of State has since urged farmers to diversify from growing maize to cultivating other crops like yam and cassava which have a bigger market at companies like Zambian Breweries.

President Lungu said this on Thursday when he paid a surprise visit to [Mount Makulu] Zambia Agriculture Research Institute ( ZARI) where he interacted with farmers who included women from cooperatives.

The President also wanted to acquaint himself with the activities the institute is involved in and whether farmers fully understand its role.

This is contained in a statement issued by Special Assistant to the President for Press and Public Relations Isaac Chipampe.

President Lungu urged farmers to diversify from maize into production of crops like yams and cassava, which have a bigger market at big companies such as Zambian Breweries.

He also urged farmers to work hard and engage in good agricultural practices if their yield has to be good.

President Lungu emphasised on the importance of seeking advice from ZARI on the type of seed that goes with the kind of soil and water in their particular areas.

“Why should you the farmers be poor when the market is there? Keep it up.No farmer, no food, no future!” the President said as he recited the Zambia National Farmers Union maxim.

The President also took time to speak to each and every exhibitor, and encouraged them to keep it up.

Earlier President Lungu visited various departments at ZARI and was impressed at the amount of research going on at the institute.

And ZARI director Peter Lungu told the President that the institution, among things, is mandated to inspect the quality of fertiliser coming into the country and bemoaned the existence of some counterfeit fertilisers brought into the country.

He said traditional seeds are stored at ZARI and at the SADC Plant Genetic Resource Centre while a seed bank in Norway has been established in case of disaster.

Mr Lungu said Zambia is generally divided into three rainfall regions with the southern parts of Zambia recording on average 800 milimetres per year, the western, central and eastern parts, 800mm to 1000 mm per year, and the northern parts, 1000 to 1,400mm per year of rainfall.

The President was received at the Institute by Minister of Agriculture Michael Katambo and his Permanent Secretary Songowayo Zyambo.

(Picture by Salim Henry)


President Hichilema to continue living at Community House, as Concourt dismisses petition against his stay at the private house



THE Constitutional Court has dismissed for lack of a merit Patriots for Economic Progress president Sean Tembo’s petition challenging President Hakainde Hichilema’s continued stay at his private house instead of shifting to State House.

This means that the President will continue staying at his private Community House in New Ksama.

Passing judgment, Constitutional Court deputy judge president Arnold Shilimi  said the court found Mr Tembo’s petition to have lacked merit  because the constitution does not compel the President to move to Nkwazi House.

Further, the judge said the court found that Mr Tembo’s plea for the court to declare an order compelling the President to shift to State House is not tenable considering that no law that obliges the Head of State to reside at State House.

“We find that in the absence of any Constitutional provision or any other law that compels the President to reside at State House,and in light of the Respondent’s[Attorney General] submission on the dilapidated state of Nkwazi House requiring high cost of renovations.

“The alleged constitutional breaches relating to the President’s alleged refusal to shift to State House lacks merit and is misconceived,” Judge Shilima said on behalf of other judges who heard the case.

“We find that the alleged breach relating to the right to life is improperly before this court for want of jurisdiction over part iii of the constitution,” he added.

The court consequently dismissed the petition for lack of merit.

In this matter, Mr Tembo petitioned the Constitutional Court over President Hichilema’s refusal to relocate to State House since he was elected in August, 2021.

The politician had submitted that the President was spending huge sums of money through his trips from Community House to State House on a daily basis and putting at risk the safety of many Zambians on the route he is using to access his house.

He  further argued that the huge sums of money which was being used on a daily basis, about K126 million per year, could be channeled to other areas of need such as procurement of drugs in hospitals and books for readers in schools.

However, in reply, the State, through Attorney General Mulilo Kabesha, argued that the petition lacked merit because Mr Tembo  did not cite the particular article or law which mandates the president actually reside at State House.

He also argued that accommodation of the past Presidents at State House was only a matter of practice or custom and not law.

(Mwebantu, Saturday, 9th December, 2023)

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Masturbation comment invites Sean Tembo to court



PATRIOTS for Economic Progress president Sean Tembo has pleaded not guilty to using insulting language when he compared the intervention to sale cheaper ZNS mealie meal in the wake of escalating prices of the commodity prices to masturbation.

The outspoken businessman has been charged with use of insulting language which he allegedly uttered on October 17 this year, the eve of National Day of Prayer, Fasting, Repentance and Reconciliation.

Allegations are that on the material day, the accused said “Bally is selling a few bags of ZNS mealie meal using Shoprite, hoping to create a perception of low price is equal to masturbation”.

The sentiments are alleged to likely provoke Abel Mashowo, who reported the case, to break the law or commit any offence against Tembo.

When the case was called today, a magistrate readout the charged and asked the accused whether he understood it.

In response, Mr Tembo responded in the affirmative and pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The court adjourned the case was adjourned to next month for commencement of trial.

(Mwebantu, Friday,  8th December, 2023)

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DPP wants more punishment for CK



THE State, through the Director of Public Prosecutions, Gilbert Phiri, has filed a notice to appeal against the five months sentence imposed of Chishimba Kambwili after he was found guilty of promoting hate speech by uttering tribal remarks.

On Thursday, Mr Kambwili, a Patriotic Front member of the central committee, was sentenced to five months imprisonment with hard labour.

This was after the Kasama Magistrate’s Court found him guilty of the offence of expressing or showing hatred, ridicule, or contempt for persons because of tribe or place of origin.

After being hailed, the politician appealed against the verdict and was later released on bail pending hearing of his appeal against the sentence.

But the DPP has filed a cross appeal seeking to challenge the five months jail term imposed on the outspoken former Roan MP.

Mr Phiri feels the sentence was too lenient and that when his application is being heard, he wants to be present in court..

“I, the above named appellant(DPP) , hereby give notice that I desire to appeal to the High Court against the sentence of the accused person.

I desire to be present when the court considers the appeal,” the notice of appeal, which has been circulated online, reads in part.

(Mwebantu, Thursday, 7th December, 2023)

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