Nurse in Sinda fired for stealing drugs

The Ministry of Health in Eastern Province has fired a nurse from Sinda district after being convicted by the court for pilferage or stealing hospital drugs.

Provincial Medical Director, Abel Kabalo says the province has recorded cases of pilferage in Sinda and Lundazi districts.

Dr. Kabalo says he also has reports that some of the medicines from hospitals are being used in chicken runs, which is not a good thing.

Dr. Kabalo says the province has a challenge of test kits resulting from such acts of pilferage.

He was speaking when addressing pharmacists in Chipata this morning as they start the commemoration of Pharmacy awareness week.

Dr. Kabalo urged the pharmacists to guard medicines jealously so that they can sustain their intended purpose of saving the community.

He says it is the duty of Pharmacists and other medical personnel to be pharmaceutical vigilant to avoid pilferages.

And Eastern Province Principal Pharmacist, Joseph Lungenda, says pharmacists in Chipata are commemorating the week by sensitizing the community in Chipata on the dangers of drug abuse.

Mr. Lungenda noted with concern the abuse of antibiotics by people, who treat themselves with drugs without prescription from medical personnel.

UPND urges government to announce maize floor price

The opposition UPND, United Party for National Development in Eastern Province has challenged government to announce the maize floor price.
Provincial Information and Publicity Secretary, Victor Mbuzi told Breeze News that government through FRA, the Food Reserve Agency should quickly announce the maize floor price in order for farmers to have a choice of where to sale their produce.
Mr Mbuzi says the issue of moisture content cannot prevent government from announcing the maize floor price.
He says FRA should offer a price of not less than 100 kwacha for a 50 kilogram bag of maize, so that farmers cover the cost used during their farming activities.
And Mr Mbuzi alleged that the statement that government will reduce the number of buying depots in this year’s marketing season will disadvantage some farmers, who will be subjected to walking long distances to the markets.
And Mr Mbuzi says the prices currently offered to farmers by private buyers on some crops such as soya beans are a mockery.
He says private buyers are swindling farmers by offering low prices because government does not buy other farm produce such as soya beans, sunflower and groundnuts.

Chadiza District records an increase of 68 percent in maize production.

Chadiza District has this year recorded an increase of 68 percent in maize production.

This is despite challenges that the district faced during the last rain season ,such as flush floods and attacks of crops by army worms and maize stalk borers.

Chadiza District Commissioner, George Phiri says the district has recorded a total of 19,600 metric tonnes of maize this season ,translating to 68 per cent increase.

Mr. Phiri says the district has produced a total of 48,455 metric tonnes, as compared to last year’s 28,850 metric tonnes of maize.

Mr. Phiri says the increase in production is as a result of favourable rainfall pattern and increase in the number of farmers benefiting from FISP, the Farmer Input Support Program.

He says the district received 1,528.3 millimetres of rainfall, in the 2016/2017 farming season, which was above normal rainfall for the district which normally receives 700 to 800 millimetres of rain.

Mr. Phiri has however, advised farmers on the need to exploit the district potential ,by diversifying in the agriculture sector if they are to attain food security and ensure increased incomes.

He says this implies venturing in various agricultural enterprises such as crops, livestock, fish, fruits and processing of raw materials, for value addition and better returns.

The District Commissioner says farmers ,must take up farming as a business and invest in proven agricultural technologies that are more reliable and profitable.

He was speaking during this year’s Agriculture and Commercial Show, which was celebrated under the theme, “Promoting a Green Economy“.