By KENNEDY MUPESENI –
ZAMBIA and other African countries have failed to fulfill their commitments under the Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Compact to record budgetary allocation of at least 10 per cent towards agriculture.
Under CAADP countries committed themselves to allocate at least 10 per cent of the national budgets towards agriculture to record at least six per cent growth for the sector and avert hunger on the African continent.
Speaking at the African Congress on Conservation Agriculture (ACCA) workshop in Lusaka yesterday African Conservation Tillage (ACT) conservation specialist Janet Achola said most African countries including Zambia failed to meet the CAADP requirement.
“Food in most African countries is characterised by imports because of low investment as most of the budget lines are below 10 per cent,” Ms Achola said.
She said policies towards agriculture needed to be improved to reduce on food imports thereby fighting poverty.
Ms Achola called for research and development which could result in yield improvement.
She said most small scale farmers were faced with a lot of challenges like lack of access to insurance and loan facilities.
Ms Achola said the Governments should introduce and implement trade-oriented policies to control exports and imports to maintain food security in respective countries.
She said that there was need to encourage irrigation farming adding that only five per cent of the land in most African countries was under irrigation.