Conforzi Plantations Limited, General Manager Atu Kalinga has asked Minister of Homeland Security Richard Chimwendo Banda to intervene and help in containing land encroachment and organisd gang activities within the estate.
He made the plea on Tuesday when the Minister toured the Conforzi Plantation Limited in Thyolo, which is an agriculture company that grows and processes tea, macadamia nuts and rears and processes of broiler chickens.
Kalinga said the company donates blankets and books to all children in schools in communities around the estate, provide health services including Under Five Clinics, HIV Testing and Counseling services through the company’s clinic.
He said since May, 2020, the company has been supplying dressed chicken, eggs and detergents weekly to Thyolo District Hospital targeting maternity and children’s ward as part of its corporate social responsibility.
Kalinga said despite all the efforts, people surrounding the Conforzi Estate, encroach and steal natural and indigenous trees adding that this is a major problem the company is facing hence seeking the minister’s intervention to address the problem.
“Encroachment is a very serious problem as people from surrounding communities steal firewood for our boilers and when we prepare land to plant trees villagers occupy the land to the extent of uprooting macadamia and blue gum seedlings,” he added.
Kalinga said the estate has registered theft of pine and blue gum trees, cutting down of small blue gum tress for poles.
“Theft of Macadamia is so rampant that we lose a lot of them through suspected organised gangs,” he added.
Home land Security Minister, Richard Chimwendo Banda assured the company that government was commitment to helping it advance in the farming industry in conducive environment.
He said this was the reason he conducted a tour to Conforzi Estates to find a lasting solution to the challenges.
“The company deserves security to continue operating in the country,” the Minister added while further assuring investors and business players peace as they contribute to the country’s economic development.