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PROBE ‘FISHY’ SWINDLE, GOVT URGED

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  • Mr Musoma who has given the investigative wings a seven-day ultimatum to enquire into how the funds under the project were being handled, said those found wanting should be brought to justice.

By OLIVER SAMBOKO
GOVERNMENT should immediately carry out an investigation into the reported suspected corruption in the disbursement of loans to small-scale fish farmers under the Zambia Aquaculture Enterprise Development Project (ZAEDP), Zambia Republican Party (ZRP) leader Wright Musoma has demanded.

Mr Musoma who has given the investigative wings a seven-day ultimatum to enquire into how the funds under the project were being handled, said those found wanting should be brought to justice.
“We are warning those involved in swindling farmers to stop or we will be forced to take action against them,” he warned.
He said they were saddened that a well-intended Government programme aimed at not only helping citizens to improve their income but also to close the gap of fish deficit in the country was being sabotaged.
Mr Musoma said Government should keep an eye on the project and ensure that no one was unduly benefitting from the loans fish farmers were receiving for aquaculture development.
He said the Aquaculture subsector was a sleeping giant until Government came up with an ambitious Aquaculture development project to empower small-scale fish famers, adding that every Zambian should ensure that the project is a success.
He said Government should ensure that the over US$29 million Aquaculture Seed Fund under the Zambia Aquaculture Enterprise Development Project benefit fish farmers so that Zambia can achieve its goals of being a protein and food secure country at both household and national level.
“Now if we allow unscrupulous people to mishandle the project, how then is the country going to meet its objective to advance the aquaculture subsector as a viable and inclusive business,” he said.
The Aquaculture Seed Fund being administered by the Citizens Economic Empowerment Commission is benefitting more than 3, 000 entrepreneurs along the fish value chain throughout the country.

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