Loopholes in Affordable inputs program

    By D.J Tomato

    The Tonse alliance government introduced the Affordable Input Program (AIP) which was formally called farm subsidy inputs program to help vulnerable farmers to buy their farm inputs at a lower price than the market price which is higher for them to afford and feed their families.

    Since the program was launched this year, it has seen different loopholes where a lot of farmers cry foul over a number of things, some of the farmers are complaining that when they buy for example a 50 kg bag of fertilizer and put it on a scale, its not even 50kg but less than that, other people are also complaining about long lines at selling points and they are taking time for them to buy the farm inputs.

    Speaking to Low Profile Malawi one of the farmers Mr Lapken Zaone said “we are even spending nights in open areas waiting to buy the inputs the following day which is not good especially for women as you know we have cases of rape which are rising every day”.

    Another farmer in Zomba Mr Jailosi said some farmers when they go to buy and the inputs are told that the system is showing that they have already bought the farm inputs, he added that government should come to their rescue because a lot of farmers are sent back without the inputs, he also said some of the people are paying K2000 to buy faster which is a very sad development

    In Mponela people were caught packaging fake seeds in bags, ready to be sold as one of the inputs in the program and the question is; is it only in Mponela where people are practicing illegal activities? The government should intervene and come to the rescue of the victims and seal up all the loopholes.