20 January 2018
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Thursday, 11 January 2018 15:54

Nsanje agricultural officials using cash transfer gatherings to convey fall armyworms messages

Written by  Martin Chiwanda
Cash transfer beneficiaries listening to Saopa Gama on how to control fall army worms - Pic by Martin Chiwanda Cash transfer beneficiaries listening to Saopa Gama on how to control fall army worms - Pic by Martin Chiwanda

Nsanje, January 11, 2017: In a quest to control further Fall Armyworm attacks on crops, Nsanje Agriculture officials are taking response messages to communities through lean period food insecurity cash transfer gatherings.

Malawi News Agency can reveal that when beneficiaries of the initiative are receiving their money, agriculture officials are given a chance to speak to gatherings on how best farmers can reduce further spread and impact of the fall armyworms.

One of the Agricultural Extension Planning Areas (EPAs) which has been going around with the messages is Zunde.

Zunde Agriculture Extension Division Coordinator, Saopa Gama in an interview after giving messages to the Chididi area cash transfer beneficiaries in the area of Senior Chief Malemia said they resorted to sensitize farmers in such gatherings on how best they could control the pests.

Gama noted that most of the social cash transfer beneficiaries were in the current situation of food insecurity due to the fall army worms’ attacks on their crops during last year’s planting season.

“We are very mindful that government is in a fix today because of the fall armyworms. Even the people who are receiving the assistance have fallen in this trap because their crops were heavily attacked by the fall armyworms last year.

“Therefore, we thought it wise that when they are getting their cash, we should use the gatherings to convey the messages so that they control the pests. We want the people to harvest enough this year despite the outbreak,” said Gama.

One of the program’s beneficiaries present during the sensitization, Moses Kombe, said the messages given to them would help them to control the pests, saying they had already started destroying some crops in their area.

“It is our hope that the advice and the messages got from this gathering will assist us in managing the fall armyworms. We are receiving the cash because we have nothing to eat. Therefore, we are very sure this year we can harvest something if we follow what we are being advised,” said Kombe.

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