…as Ngoma, Mubanga, Kangwa tour model co-operative farm in Palabana
A team comprising Special Assistant to the President for Political Affairs, Levy Ngoma, Minister for Small Scale and Medium Enterprises Development, Elias Mubanga and Ministry of Youth and Sport Permanent Secretary, Kangwa Chileshe this afternoon toured Jochi Genuine Millionaires Movement Farm in Palabana, Lusaka South.
The farm (a model co-operative) which houses five broiler houses with a total of 43,000, 4-week-old chicks, is scheduled to generate in excess of K3 million in revenue after the chickens are offloaded on the market next week.
The visit was aimed at showcasing to Zambian citizens that co-operatives were a viable venture that could result in youth/women empowerment and employment for the Zambian masses.
After a tour of the 4 out of the 5 poultry houses each hosting not less than 10, 000 birds, Hon. Ngoma, speaking on behalf of the President, Hakainde Hichilema, appealed to the youths of the country to take charge and venture into various forms of co-operatives, stressing that time for hand outs was long gone.
Hon. Ngoma argued that it was time for the youths to channel their energies and might into productive ventures as forming various forms of co-operatives be it farming, poultry, aquaculture, transport, and other forms of businesses that would result into income generation and job creation for the masses.
And Hon. Mubanga, Minister for Small Scale and Medium Enterprises Development, charged that his ministry was ready to corporate with the youths of the country in furnishing them with the needed information with regards to registration
He said his office was open to all those seeking to be empowered with the needed information as regards formation of co-operatives, adding that the New Dawn regime was committed to providing avenues for income generation among the Zambian populace through ventures such as co-operatives.
Mubanga however regretted that it was disheartening that not so many youths had shown interest in forming co-operatives, adding that the turn out of those seeking guidance and information pertaining co-operatives visiting his office were not impressive.
Youth and Sports PS, Kangwa Chileshe, who expressed sadness at the low turn-out of applications for youth funds since the pronouncement by President Hichilema to form co-operatives was made 3 months ago, challenged the youths to take the lead in forming co-operatives, saying that was the easiest way they’d part in the national cake which he observed had eluded them in the past regime.
CEO of Jochi, Joseph Mushalika told the delegation that the co-oporative, which is expected to rake in a substantial amount of revenue to a tune of K3 million when the birds are offloaded to the market, particularly InterContinental Hotel, in a weeks time, was run by 300 invidividuals.
And explaining the genesis of the project, currently overseen by a 4th year Veterinary Student from UNZA, Jenipher Mutanti, Mr Mushalika charged that when he first called for people to join the co-operative, most people expressed doubts with regards to the venture, but that when the birds were delivered to the farm, people took keen interest.
He also narrated that instead of the initial K20, 000 required to set up the co-operative, the team was able to raise more than K40, 000 to set up the business.