Commercial farmers in Chikankata district in Southern province threaten to reduce workforce due to continued load shedding affecting their businesses.
Authorities at Chisoba, Delta, Mubuyu and ZimZam commercial farms in Chikankata district complained to government that their operations were not operating at full capacity due to continued load shedding.
The farmers said development has affected their crops, animal husbandry and agricultural equipment and have threatened to cut down on the size of their workforce.
This came to light when Chikankata District Commissioner (DC) Kahumbu Haakachima and other government officials inspected farms in the district.
Chisoba Farm Manager Wittie Moono said the number of working hours among the workers has since been reduced because of the power outages especially during the day.
ZimZam Farm Manager Andre Nel disclosed that they use tractor engines to generate electricity when the area is load shedded.
“This load shedding by ZESCO has hit us badly in times when we need electricity. During those periods, we use tractors to generate
electricity especially when mixing feed for our cattle because they need to eat,” said. Nel
In response, Chikankata DC Kahumbu Haakachima called for calm from the farming community as government works round the clock in addressing
the power deficit the country was experiencing.
Ms. Haakachima however, challenged the investors to devise means of coming up with their own power instead of depending on the State.
Recently, Energy Minister Christopher Yaluma said Government has made progress in creating a power-pool from imports and secured100 mega
watts of electricity imports from neighbouring Mozambique to mitigate the power deficit in the country.
Mr. Yaluma also said Zambia was in advanced negotiations for importation of more power from other countries that have surplus to
cushion the power deficit.