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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Zambia nabs 16 foreigners in human trafficking syndicate

LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) -- Farmers in Zambia on Tuesday urged the government not to succumb to demands by some quarters of society to ban maize exports.

The Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU), an umbrella body for both large and small-scale farmers, said calls to ban maize exports should not be entertained as the country did not have enough storage facilities.

Calvin Kaleyi, media and public relations manager of the farmers’ body, said Zambia has excess maize beyond its storage capacity hence the need to allow for export.

“Government does not have adequate silos to store away maize from farmers; neither is it willing to buy maize off all farmers, given the FRA (Food Reserve Agency) capacity, both financially and capacity of storage,” he said.

Stopping the maize from being exported would lead to prices crashing further, he added.

This, he said, would lead to loss of jobs and increased poverty among farmers as well as rampant smuggling of maize across borders.

Some stakeholders have called on the Zambian government to consider banning maize exports and only allow the export of finished maize products.

Zambia produced a bumper harvest of 2.8 million tonnes of maize during the 2016/2017 season and the Food Reserve Agency said it will only purchase 500,000 tonnes from the farmers.

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EARLIER REPORTS:

LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) -- Zambia’s immigration authorities have arrested 16 foreigners and three locals in a suspected human trafficking syndicate, an immigration spokesperson said on Tuesday.

Among those arrested in one of the suburbs of Lusaka, the country’s capital, were 15 Ethiopians, three Zambians and a Tanzanian, according to Immigration Department spokesperson Namati Nshinka.

He said immigration officers launched the raid in Matero East suburb on Monday following information from the public indicating an impending movement of the Ethiopians through the country’s southern border.

The spokesperson added that the suspects were found hidden in one of the vehicles at a house where the Ethiopians were staying.

According to him, it was established that one of the vehicles was the same one that evaded officers during another operation earlier this month which resulted in the arrest of 15 Ethiopians and the suspected mastermind, a Zambian, who was also suspected to be the owner of the house.

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Internationalatomic energy body to train Zambians in nuclear science

LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) -- A senior Zambian government official said on Monday that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has pledged to help the country train personnel in nuclear science.

Minister of Higher Education Nkandu Luo said the agency was ready to support the Zambian government in human resource and capacity development as the southern African nation prepares to set up its first-ever nuclear center.

The Zambian minister, who has just returned from attending the 61st regular session of the general conference of the IAEA in Vienna, Austria, said the country needed to interact with countries that were already doing well in nuclear science, according to a statement released by her office.

Zambia, she said, was already working with the Russian government which has agreed to train 40 local people in nuclear science.

In June this year, a Russian firm, Rosatom, signed a project development agreement with the Zambian government, paving the way for the establishment of the Center for Nuclear Science and Technology as well as preliminary feasibility studies into the proposed construction of a nuclear power plant.

The establishment of the center was meant to increase research in health and increase knowledge on other sources of energy that include nuclear energy, the minister said.

Zambia already uses nuclear science in the diagnosis and treatment of cancers at its Cancer Disease Hospital.

 

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