IFP: KZN not prepared for 'army' invasion
The Inkatha Freedom Party is not convinced that the KwaZulu-Natal province is adequately prepared for the expected invasion of Army Worms in that region.
The worms have already wreaked havoc in the northern regions of the country, and IFP spokesperson for Agriculture, Nhlanhla Msimango, says there are genuine fears in the local industry.
He has accused MEC for Agriculture, Themba Mthembu, of failing to comprehend the severity of the matter, in a province which is heavily reliant on its agricultural sector. He said the silence was deafening.
"Since some provinces have already felt the devastating effects of army worms that have destroyed huge crops, we challenge the MEC to reveal what prevention measures, if any his Department has in place to safeguard our agricultural sector," said Msimango.
"Our province is an agricultural hub that produces food not only for South Africa but also for the export market. It is vitally important that this sector is not undermined by the probable threat that is posed by these army worms.
"We have seen the devastation that these worms are capable of causing and therefore believe that the Department of Agriculture should be proactive and engage with farmers in order to give them peace of mind that their crops will not be affected," added the IFP spokesperson.
"The MEC should not remain silent with arms folded in the face of such a threat to our agricultural sector. We cannot allow a situation where this government only reacts in a knee-jerk manner after a disaster has occurred.
"We are very concerned that should these army worms invade our province there will be large scale destruction of farms that will result in massive job losses. The impact will also be felt in the increase in food prices and this will affects the poorest of the poor. It will also be difficult for farmers to recover from such huge losses especially since they are still facing severe challenges caused by drought."
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