M’Mbelwa District Council director of agriculture, environment and natural resources Beatrice Mbakaya has asked the district stakeholders panel to channel farmers’ concerns to relevant authorities.
She said this on Tuesday in Mzimba during a district agriculture stakeholders panel meeting with extension planning areas drawn from Mzimba South.
Mbakaya said most farmers have needs such as lack of markets for their agricultural produce, lack of knowledge on where to get expertise on their farming and lack of information on loan providers, among others.
She said: “As Ministry of Agriculture, we look up to committees such as district stakeholders panels to know issues affecting farmers.
“You are our eyes on issues requiring our intervention on the ground. So, we ask you to be vibrant in working and reporting issues and concerns of farmers to us.”
M’Mbelwa District Council acting chief agriculture officer Raphael Msyali said the future of agriculture rests on the shoulders of district stakeholders panels because they are the ones who link up farmers with various players in the agriculture sector.
He said the role of the newly elected district stakeholders committee is to report issues concerning farmers to the agriculture department and other relevant authorities.
Said Msyali: “The role of office-bearers at District Agriculture Stakeholders Panel is to gather issues happening at traditional authority level and find means to address them with other stakeholders in the agriculture sector.
“The committee comprises extension workers who interact with farmers on the lower levels of the agricultural field.”
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