The Food and Agriculture Organization has revealed that Zambia’s funding to the agricultural sector is way below the Maputo declaration and will make it difficult for the country to achieve sustainable agriculture production.
FAO Country Representative Dr George Okech said Zambia’s funding to the sector is still way below the Maputo declaration which requires about 10 per cent of the budget to be allocated to the agriculture sector.
Dr Okech also expressed sadness on the prevalent trend in the continent, only a few countries have met the Maputo declaration on the budgetary allocation to the agriculture sector.
Speaking at the commemoration of this year’s world food day organized by Global Citizen, Civil Society Scaling Up Nutrition Alliance and Hivos Southern Africa, Dr Okech advised the Zambian government to put more money in the agriculture sector to guarantee food security.
He also said FAO is working with government and other stakeholder to come up with post-harvest loss strategy.
“FAO is working with government and other stakeholders to develop the Post-Harvest Loss strategy that will help minimize the loss of agriculture produce.
“The strategy if implemented will ensure that Zambia produces post-harvest loss of grain including tomatoes, mangos and other produce which goes to waste every year,” he said.
He regretted that a lot of food goes to waste every year in Zambia when some people are going hungry.
Global Citizen Lead Zambia Campaigner Mwandwe Chileshe also expressed concern with the way hunger has been on the increase in the country
She said the food insecurity risk is likely to increase malnutrition cases in Zambia thereby reversing the efforts already made in curbing such cases.
She said: “The World Food Day commemorated last week should be used to get government and other stakeholders on board to start taking action to address the hunger situation.”