By Franklin Mtambalika
The proliferation of counterfeit seeds on the local market has angered stakeholders in the agri-business sector as they call for quick operationalization of the newly-amended Seed Act of 2022.
The stakeholders in the agriculture sector have observed that the absence of a binding legal framework to flush out unscrupulous seed traders and manufacturers on the market has affected the country’s agricultural output.
However, the passing of the Seed Act in April this year by Parliament brought hope to the sector as players especially farmers felt the sector would be well-regulated with perpetrators of such malpractices being subjected to hefty fines and long jail terms for contravening the laws governing the agricultural sector.
But speaking on Friday during a Media Breakfast, the Civil Society Agriculture Network, CISANET, National Director Lilian Saka urged the media to help in the operationalization of the Act for it to be effective.
Saka said the media engagement will help in enlightening farmers, traders and certified seed producers to abide by the law for the betterment of the country.
Taking his turn, Director of Agriculture and Research Services in the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr Wickson Makumba, said government is committed to revamp the sector hence the formulation of the Seed Act.
Makumba expressed optimism that the minister of agriculture will appoint a date for the operationalization of the Act before the end of this year.