Only 19% Zam­bians own land, says PS

Daily Nation Newspaper - - HOME NEWS - By IRVIN MUYUMBWA

The pro­vin­cial ad­min­is­tra­tion is work­ing to­wards en­sur­ing that at least 50 per­cent of Zam­bians own land, small pieces of land are a hin­drance to en­gag­ing in agri­cul­ture ac­i­tiv­i­ties— Mr Kabwe

ONLY 19 per­cent of Zam­bia’s to­tal pop­u­la­tion have ac­cess to land but we want more Zam­bians to own land, Cen­tral Prov­ince Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary Chanda Kabwe has said. Mr Kabwe said Zam­bians owned land rang­ing from 2 to 5 hectares but that Gov­ern­ment wanted more Zam­bians to own land of 20 to about 100 hectares. In an in­ter­view dur­ing the Cen­tral Prov­ince In­vest­ment Fo­rum and Expo yes­ter­day, Mr Kabwe said the pro­vin­cial ad­min­is­tra­tion was work­ing to­wards en­sur­ing that at least 50 per­cent of Zam­bians own land, say­ing small pieces of land were a hin­drance to en­gag­ing in agri­cul­ture ac­i­tiv­i­ties. Mr Kabwe said even tra­di­tional lead­ers in Cen­tral Prov­ince were in agree­ment that land was key in grow­ing the coun­try’s econ­omy in a sus­tain­able man­ner and there­fore, land re­mained an im­por­tant as­set for ev­ery na­tion. “Only 19 per­cent of Zam­bia’s to­tal pop­u­la­tion have ac­cess to land. We have huge chunks of land in Cen­tral Prov­ince. For ex­am­ple, there is over 100,000 hectares of land in Nansanga where we have done the roads and con­nected the area to the na­tional grid with a dam built where peo­ple can go to start farm­ing ac­tiv­i­ties,” Mr Kabwe said. And Mr Kabwe said he was happy that most in­vestors had shown in­ter­est to in­vest in the prov­ince af­ter ex­plor­ing the avail­able po­ten­tial dur­ing the Cen­tral Prov­ince In­vest­ment Fo­rum and Expo. At the expo 300 youths were also trained in en­tre­pre­neur­ial skills of which, 100 had been iden­ti­fied as ben­e­fi­cia­ries in some farm­ing blocks. He said Cen­tral Prov­ince re­mained the largest pro­ducer of soya beans and wheat, and was there­fore, look­ing for part­ners to in­vest in pro­cess­ing plants in the area. The PS said in this way the coun­try will cease ex­ports of the com­mod­ity in its raw form. “We want value ad­di­tion in Cen­tral Prov­ince be­cause the farm­ers are able to pro­vide for lo­cal de­mand and also for ex­port,” he said.

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