Government has assured Malawians that it is prepared to end the outbreak of fall army worms which has been destroying farm crops during the previous agricultural seasons.
Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development, Joseph Mwanamvekha disclosed this recently in the area of Traditional Authority (TA) Chigaru in Blantyre when he presided over the official launch of relief maize distribution programme to people affected by hunger.
“We have been working tirelessly to find solution to this fall army worm. Today, I am pleased to announce that our researchers have introduced another butterfly-like worm which will eat up the fall army worms in the fields.
“As a ministry, we believe that this worm will be effective to end the outbreak,” said Mwanamvekha.
The Minister said government was concerned with the devastating effects of fall army worms as it led to many families not harvesting enough food for consumption.
“Since the outbreak, we have had poor yield and apart from implementing various interventions, we just hope that the worms to be introduced would end the problem once and for all,” he said.
Grey Nyandule Phiri, Principal Secretary in the ministry said campaigns were currently underway to encourage farmers practice good farming practices.
“There is need for farmers to be on alert because the outbreak can easily come to an end if noticed at an early stage. As a ministry, we are prepared to end the outbreak for the nation to benefit from its agricultural activities,” said Nyandule.
Commenting on the same, Group Village Headman Mwenganyama of the area of TA Chigaru hailed government for finding a solution to fall army worms before the next farming season.
Fall army worms have been a big threat in the agricultural sector and for the past two farming seasons, the country has realised reduced harvest because of the same problem coupled with others which were weather-related.