Minister of Agriculture, Honourable Lobin Lowe, MP has called on contractors constructing schemes under PRIDE to strive for quality, warning that Government will not tolerate substandard work.
Honorable Lowe made the call when he launched construction works of irrigation schemes at Wowo Irrigation Scheme in Senior Traditional Authority Nkhulambe in Phalombe district.
“We want quality work that will benefit many generations. You have to make sure the infrastructure you will produce is durable and of high quality,” said Hon. Lowe while speaking direct to the contractors who at this point had stood up at the request of the minister.
The minister who was in company of his Deputy, Honourable Agnes Nkusa Nkhoma, MP and the Principal Secretary for Irrigation, Mr. Sandramu Maweru then asked the contractors to consider employing community members so that more locals benefit.
He said employing locals will assist in transferring skills that will enable the locals do repairs on their own when the contractors would have gone.
“There are skilled and unskilled labor force gathered here. We look forward to more local people being employed. The ministry will not be happy if we hear that you have only employed people outside the scheme,” said Hon. Lowe.
Construction works have started with three schemes in three districts of Wowo in Phalombe, Lingoni in Machinga and Matoponi in Zomba.
Construction will move to other districts of Chitipa, Rumphi, Karonga, Mzimba, Nkhata Bay, Nkhotakota, Dowa, Balaka, Chiradzulu in 2022.
Principal Secretary for Irrigation, Mr. Sandram Maweru called on contractors to work with speed while maintaining quality of the works. He says he looks forward to seeing quality infrastructure within the one year agreed in the contract
Senior Chief Nkhulambe expresses gratitude to Government for considering her area when it came to development. She added that the Wowo Irrigation Scheme will go a long way in improving livelihoods of her subjects as proceeds from the irrigation farming will improve income levels of beneficiary households.