Two young people from Chipata have been selected by Breeze FM radio station to attend this year’s MEDIA KIDOCRACY KONFRENCE in Cape Town, South Africa.
The two delegates are Bertha Chulu, aged 12, a Grade 9 pupil at Hillside Girls High School and Simon Nkhoma, 18, a grade 11 pupil at Anoya Boys High School.
The two are among the many committed young people who have been working with Breeze FM on different kids programmes.
Speaking before departure for Cape Town, the two expressed happiness at the opportunity to represent Breeze FM and the country at such a high level children’s conference.
They urged other young people to be determined and believe in themselves if they are to achieve what they want in life.
The MEDIA KIDOCRACY KONFRENCE has been organised by Bush Radio, in partnership with the South African Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA) and the German Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES).
The conference, taking place from 9th to 14th December, 2012, is being attended by children from across the world to mark South Africa’s 18 years of democracy.
The Media Kidocracy Konfrence aims to provide youth delegates, aged 12 – 21 from around the world, an opportunity to critically examine the media landscape as it pertains to young people.
This year’s conference will focus on themes such as youth understanding of Gender, Human Rights, Environment, Health, Labour and Arts and Culture.
The Energy Regulation Board, ERB, Consumer Watch Group in Chipata has warned people against transporting fuel in containers.
Chipata district consumer watch group coordinator, Martins Njekwa, says that some people have continued transporting fuel in containers which is not allowed.
Mr. Njekwa also observed that some people are buying fuel in huge quantities and keeping it in containers, thereby, creating an impression that Chipata is experiencing a fuel shortage.
He said that the group will now be more vigilant to ensure that the trend comes to an end.
Mr. Njekwa has also warned people who are smuggling fuel to neighbouring Malawi to immediately stop.
Recently, Ministry of Energy and Water Development Permanent Secretary, George Zulu accused some fuel station operators of creating a false impression that Chipata is experiencing a fuel shortage.
Four people have died in a road accident on the Katete Mozambique Road.
Eastern Province Permanent Secretary, Mr. Emmanuel Mwamba confirmed the accident to Breeze News which happened around 13: 30 hours.
Mr. Mwamba says that two adults and two children died on the spot when they were hit by a ZRA, Zambia Revenue Authority vehicle registration number ALF 6095.
He said that the accident happened near Chimbundile Basic School when the driver of the vehicle lost control and hit five pedestrians.
Mr. Mwamba says that the ZRA driver and an officer were beaten by the people from the community and are currently admitted to St. Francis Hospital in Katete together with the other pedestrian.
Mr. Mwamba says that he has directed the Katete district commissioner’s office to assist with funeral arrangements and that ZRA will meet all the funeral expenses.
Residents of the newly created Sinda district have complained over the piling of uncollected garbage in some of the main markets.
The residents are now worried that diseases such as cholera and diarrhoea may break out if the garbage is not collected soon enough.
Breeze FM correspondent in Petauke, Mercy Maseko reports that a random check at both Sinda New and Old markets have revealed piles of uncollected garbage.
Meanwhile, Sinda Ward councillor, Shadreck Mwanza has called on the district council to take garbage collection seriously.
He also expressed worry of disease outbreaks especially after the onset of the rains.
And Sinda district council acting secretary, Toid Mwale acknowledged that the newly established local authority is facing challenges in waste management.
Mr. Mwale, however, explained that the council has requested the RRU, Rural Roads Unit to assist with a front loader machine to be used to collect the garbage.
The distribution of inputs under FISP, the Farmer Input Support Programme for this year, has been described as poor.
This is because farmers are getting less number of bags than expected.
Sisinje Ward Councillor, Samuel Lugomo Phiri, says that farmers are sharing one pack, consisting of four bags of fertilizer and a 10 kilogramme bag of maize seed.
Mr. Phiri said that previously, each farmer used to receive a full pack.
He says that this is likely to contribute to poor yields and that the situation has been worsened by the delay by FRA, the Food Reserve Agency.
Mr. Phiri also said that the distribution of inputs is too slow.
And Provincial Agriculture Coordinator, PACO, Dr. Obvious Kabinda says that his office has received reports on the matter, and that investigations are underway.
Dr. Kabinda said that each farmer receives inputs according to the number of packs they applied for.
He has also warned that cooperative members who will be found to be stealing from farmers risk losing their jobs.
Farmers have been cautioned not to receive any farming inputs from cotton companies without signing contracts.
The Cotton Association of Zambia, CAZ vice national chairperson, Michael Banda told Breeze News that farmers must ensure that they sign contracts that clearly indicate the pre-planting price.
He said that this will prevent problems that cotton farmers faced during the last marketing season, where prices were reduced, but farmers could not do anything against cotton companies.
Mr. Banda explained that signing contracts will enable farmers to drag cotton companies to court, if the buying price is not followed.
The Patriotic Front, PF in Petauke district has warned that it will take disciplinary measures against its member who are operating parallel party structures.
Breeze News correspondent in Petauke, Mercy Maseko reports that district chairperson, Stanford Mwanza says that the party will not tolerate members who do not abide by party rules.
Mr. Mwanza said this when PF officials in Petauke met newly appointed provincial acting secretary, Leonard Banda.
And newly appointed PF provincial acting secretary, Leonard Banda observed that there is need for the party to educate its officials at various levels on the party constitution.
Mr. Banda says that party officials must fully understand the party constitution and follow party guidelines in the operations.
Eastern Province has received over 22 Billion Kwacha to pay farmers who have not yet received their money after selling maize to FRA, the Food Reserve Agency.
Provincial Agriculture Co-ordinator, Obvious Kabinda confirmed this to Breeze News.
Dr. Kabinda says that government has so far spent over 220 Billion Kwacha in paying farmers who sold their maize to FRA in Eastern Province.
He says that this is out of about 246 Billion Kwacha, which is the total value of the maize bought in the province.
Dr. Kabinda says that this represents 85.3 per cent of the total payment, leaving a balance of 26.5 Billion Kwacha.
He expressed confidence that the remaining balance will be cleared by next week.
Male and female teachers are reportedly sharing one house at Lusowe Basic School in Petauke district due to a serious shortage of staff houses that has hit the school.
Lusowe Basic School PTA, Parents Teachers Association Chairman, Martin Banda confirmed this to Breeze FM correspondent in Petauke Mercy Maseko.
He explained that parents in the area are not comfortable with the situation as it is not normal for women and men to share one house because they need privacy.
Mr. Banda appealed to government to quickly help the school with building materials to complete two teachers’ houses which are still under construction.
Police in Chipata have arrested seven Patriotic Front, PF Ward officials in Chipata Central Constituency for attempting to hold a peaceful demonstration without permit.
The PF members wanted to protest against the suspension of six constituency, district and provincial officials, including provincial chairperson, Lucas Phiri.
Eastern Province Police Commissioner, Grace Chipalira confirmed the arrests to Breeze News.
Mrs. Chipalira says that the ward members were picked by the police on Tuesday.
She says that those detained, include Dilika ward chairperson Landson Mtambo, Msanga ward vice chairperson Timothy Banda, Msanga Ward treasure, Lilian Begea and four others.
Mrs. Chipalira says that the seven have been charged with conduct likely to cause breach to piece and are expected to appear in court today.