Thyolo AIP Beneficiaries Storm District Council  

AIP beneficiaries presenting a petition AIP beneficiaries presenting a petition - pic by Luka Beston

Scores of people from Village Headman Samson 2 in the area of Traditional Authority Thomasi this morning stormed Thyolo District council to present their grievances in relation to unaccessibility of fertiliser under the Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP).

Village Headman Samson 2 claims that they left their village yesterday to the DCs office in order to push authorities to come to their rescue.

The concerned people say, about 383 AIP beneficiaries were expected to redeem the farm inputs in their village, but only 49 people had their IDs scanned on 3 January 2023, until now, none has accessed a bag.

"They came in our village to scan our 49 IDs despite that the programme targeted 383 farmers. But since that time, we have not heard from them on the availability of the fertiliser," he said.

However, speaking in a separate interview, Thyolo Chief Agriculture Officer, Mirriam Ndlovu says their office just facilitated the scanning process of the IDs, but the responsibility of bringing the fertiliser lies in the hands of their parliamentarian for Thyolo West, Charles Mchacha who is not ready to do so.

"It's difficult to tell when they will be receiving their fertiliser because for us we were just facilitating the process of scanning the ID. But now on fertiliser delivery, the MP of the area has to come in to assist," Ndlovu said.

But in his reaction, Democratic Progressive Party Parliamentarian, Charles Mchacha says he could not commit to dispatch fertiliser to his people under the Affordable Inputs Programme (AIP) since he had no contract with government.

Mchacha has told Zodiak Online that he did not want to engage in an initiative which has no contract, fearing for the eventualities if anything goes wrong.

"I said no to that. Yes I serve people but not to that extent. You know I am in opposition so if anything goes wrong I don't want to be blamed. I don't have any contract with government, so do you work where you have not been given any contract? Mchacha asked.

After presenting their petition to Thyolo District Council Director of Administration, George Chisuse, Village Headman Samson asked the council to provide transport means to ferry them back since they were exhausted to walk again and the council has provided a lorry.

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