The speaker of the National Assembly has directed Agriculture Minister Brian Chituwo to issue a ministerial statement on the reported shortage of mealie meal especially in Southern Province.

Amusaa Mwanamwambwa said the minister should urgently make an inquiry into the reported shortage of the staple food and report to parliament quickly.

This followed a point of order raised by Mazabuka MP Garry Nkombo who wondered whether the minister of agriculture was in order to remain quiet amid reports of mealie meal shortage in Southern province.

Mr. Nkombo quoting Friday’s newspapers, told the house that people had formed long queues at Mazabuka’s shoprite as early as 04 hours in attempts to buy mealie meal.

In his rulling the Speaker said although the point of order was unprocedural, the subject matter was of great concern as it involved people’s welfare.

Choma milling which is the main supplier of mealie meal in Southern Province has shut down its operations citing a shortage of maize.

Company managing director Jon Mackatos who confirmed the development to ZANIS in Choma said the plant stopped operating due to lack of maize.

Mr Mackatos said the milling plant had signed a contract with the Food Reserve Agency for the supply of 7, 000 metric tonnes of maize for the month of January but only 400 tonnes was received.

He said the 400 tonnes is only sufficient for one day’s production of mealie meal due to the plants big production capacity.

Mr Mackatos said it has become difficult under the present circumstances to continue running the plant in the absence of the raw material.

The milling plant is the only one producing mealie meal in the district and servicing surrounding district of Sinazongwe, Namwala, Kalomo and other southern province towns.

And district commissioner Laiven Apuleni told ZANIS in Choma the suspension of production is unfortunate and will impact negatively on the availability of mealie meal in the district.

Mr Apuleni said management at Choma milling had tried their best to source maize but have found it increasingly difficult.

He said has appealed to the Food Reserve Agency to act expeditiously because the situation has gone out of hand in the district.

A survey by ZANIS in Choma found that most retail outlets have run out of mealie meal while those found with the commodity had abnormally inflated the price of 25 kilgoramme breakfast bag to K 75, 000.

Several residents have now been gripped with panic over the shortage of mealie meal whose price is rising on daily basis.

ZANIS/CM/Ends/MM

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99 COMMENTS

  1. Shame. MMD gvt they have taken us to UNIP era. How can they give maize to zim fogetting its own pipo? The bible said love your neighbour as u love yourself. Poor MMD they loved the neighbour than they loved themself. Poor MMD and shame bane!

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  2. We had enough stocks of maize, but the mmd government decided to export to Congo DR and Zimbabwe without considering their own people first. Look at the consequences now,thats what happens if a bunch of incompetent people are in government.

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  3. The Speaker needs to change the lens of his reading glasses.. There is some straining to read in here.
    Its a pity. 8->8->

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  4. Sometimes when the price of maize is high on the international market it makes sense to sell it to earn forex. There is also a cost which has to be incurred in storing the maize. The question should really be about where the money that was earned from selling the maize went to because if managed prudently it can be used to buy maize from another source.

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  5. There is nothing complicated about feeding the nation. It need a simple strategy without workshops and speechs. Let maize be prodused by compitent commercial farmers but not amartures. Let FSP be be handdled by the private sector not Civil Servants! Let the Central Statistics Office stop cooking up data on BUMPER HARVEST when there has never been one in the past 2 decades. Let’s leave agric and other important issues to compitent people PERIOD!

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  6. # 8 & 12 deal with issues. I am sure he knows how effective those lenses are. Lets not become personal. If it was a white man you were going to remain mute.Nomba pantu niba munenfwe……!

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  7. I tell we are going back to UNIP days shortly cadres will set in to control ques at major retail outlets and our women will fall victim to these thugs.How can we experince maize shortage in Southern Provice which is a major producer of maize. I hope the bulk of the maize sock has not ended up in Katanga Province inexchange for copper concretes to be processed on Copperbelt.Let us be watchfull with MMD everything is possible. Dr. Berrian Chitwansombo be proactive you are longer at Health. We dont want to reach a stage where pipo will resort to panic buying. FRA CEO DR. Atowela Mwanamoyo whats the matter man. Have u joined the smugglers and make afew bucks before u are sent back to Ministry.

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  8. UNIP OYEEE, OYEEE: UNIP OYEEE, OYEEE.

    Welcome back to UNIP days. We told you Rupiah (Ndalama) Banda is UNIPIST. You did not agree with us. What do you see now?
    Everything is being done in UNIP fashion.

    This is an MMD-UNIP Govt

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  9. Good morning bloggers.

    Considering the grave problems theat the USA and Europe are facing, our maize shortage is a simple task to solve. They are striving to keep hundreds of millions employed while we only have 12 million to feed.

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  10. Again my people continue to suffer…:-?

    In Zambia a major Company can just shut down its operations?

    No one was able to spot the difficulties at a earlier stage?

    How do these companies operate?

    This reminds me of what we used to do in Kindergarten. Twale buta!!

    Too much ukubuta ku Zambia.

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  11. Henry, son of Rupiah Banda, imported GMO maize which was sent back to RSA. You, Amusaa MwanaM and Chituwo, both know this.

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  12. The problem pa zed is the nchekeleko culture. I was shocked to hear that one farmer in kabwe wanted to sell thousands of metric tonnes to FRA at $400/t but they opted to buy from SA at $480/t and now we hear that its GMO maize. What a waste of resources mwebantu.

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  13. We have failed in all areas to run this country properly. Be it in Agric, Passports, Soccer, Education, Elections etc. Its never shameful to say sorry to the Brits and give them back the country to run.

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  14. Awe cha shupa bane. The current events unfolding under the leadership of ba RB are reminicent of Kaunda era. Ubunga is still an issue!!Whats the point of having such a monolith as FOOD RESERVE AGENCY??? Costine Chilala where have you taken the raw material??

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  15. Every time i think about failings pa zed, umutwe ulakalipa. I feel like kicking someone where the sun never shines. Whats just wrong with these educated embiciles?

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  16. #25 Muya

    I understand your frustration but your country is your destiny. Giving it up to the opressors is the worst thing you can ever do.
    Would you abandon your wife and kids to strangers just because you are unemployed and have failed to feed them? Then you might aswell sell your soul to Lucifer.

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  17. there needs to more budget allocation to the ”PM empowerment programme”. These funds to be used to help facilitate MPs to explain to thier wards the improtance of maize to the security of Zambia. Or bring back the slush fund.

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  18. #30 Nine Chale

    Being unemployed hence failing to provide for your family is cause by an external factor. Wev are talking of actions we could take to avaoid problems but chose not to because of personal interests. How do u explain FRA buying GMO maize for $480/t as opposed to locally produced maize going at $400/t? This is the cancer which will never go as long as greedy pipo run the show.

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  19. This is connected to what is happening in world.

    Control oil you control nations
    Contrl food you control people

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  20. #32 Muya: It is a mistake to think that FRA is the only domain capable of feeding Zambia. According to my knowledge, it was only instituted as an alternative suppler.

    Please try to reason deeper, instead of just playing the blame game as is the order of most bloggers here. I think you are smarter than that?

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  21. Laides and Gentlemen, we have been independent for 4 decaades and gthe govmt still fails to make strategic plans to ensure the stapple food is not only affordable but also available to its citizens????? its touching, z is finished withn nyama soya and mmd clowns…only if we could get the voting crap right, and usher in a totally new govt maybe things could change, i m touched [-(
    when will there be sanity in our country?

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  22. Ladies and Gentlemen, we have been independent for 4 decades and the govt still fails to make strategic plans to ensure the staple food is not only affordable but also available to its citizens????? its touching, z is finished with nyama soya and mmd clowns…only if we could get the voting crap right, and usher in a totally new govt maybe things could change, i m touched [-(
    when will there be sanity in our country?

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  23. Ati Bwa!
    Firstly ask yourselve’s…we have FRA, FSP, Disaster Mgt Unit under Office of VP, Min of Agriculture (3 depts) and you are telling me we can not make projections to determine how long our stocks will last? Sometimes I wounder why we pay tax!

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  24. Global Recession is on us Ladies and Gentlemen….dont think it is only happening in Europe or America…Atleast their governments are bailing out big industries, here Dora Siliya is busy advocating for closure of companies..

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  25. Period
    The kindergarten class had a homework assignment to find out about something exciting and relate it to the class the next day.
    When the time came for the little kids to give their reports, the teacher was calling on them one at a time. She was reluctant to call upon little Johnnie, knowing that he sometimes could be a bit crude. But eventually his turn came.
    Little Johnnie walked up to the front of the class, and with a piece of chalk, made a small white dot on the blackboard, then sat back down. Well the teacher couldn’t figure out what Johnnie had in mind for his report on something exciting, so she asked him just what that was.
    “It’s a period” reported Johnnie.

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  26. STARVATION AGAIN!! [-([-([-(

    YOU PIPO SHOULD WORK HARD I PITTY YOUOOOOOOO. AND ITS SAD THAT YOU ONLY DEPEND ON AKABWALI I COULD HAVE ASSISTED SOME WITH FAST FOODS.
    WHAT OF ICHINGOVWA? TACHIMONEKA.

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  27. “Well I can see that,” she said, “but what is so exciting about a period.”
    “Damned if I know” said Johnnie, “but this morning my sister said she missed one. Then Daddy had a heart attack, Mommy fainted and the man next door shot himself.”

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  28. LIVINGSTONE WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT, I CAN’T ORGANIZE ANY IDEA PLEASE DIRECT ME SO WE CAN MOVE TOGETHER.

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  29. #48
    Ni kaJoki, but you where too fast to blog en left ma pieces hanging, enjoy your weekend off :d/

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  30. Ba Dr. Maureen have you read the Post of Today? Rupiah’s sons are running amock with corruption

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  31. Mwapya nabasa the Banda Family there all over place Zamtel scandal Banda /GMO Maize Banda .There more things coming just wait see.

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  32. Anso mucili muledabwa!!!!

    Theory of the maize saga
    The stocks available are first sold out in forex, while other stocks are sourced locally (at extremely low prices from toiling farmers)to cover up for the millers requests. In this current saga, ‘idilu lyali tanuka'(before getting replacement stocks,pressure from millers like choma milling increased). In desparation, they opted for the SA deal which offered a quick delivery as opposed to the local supplier, who is able to deliver but not within their time frame as he has to go to the remotest corners of zed to bring in stocks, since GRZ has “no capacity to collect”so to speak.

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  33. Guys wake up the maize was brought in the country few days ago but it was GMO maize.The maize has been returned back to the south of this continent.This is the main reason for shot fall.start eating rice.

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  34. POST
    It appears that this government is taking our people for granted when it comes to the issue of maize and mealie-meal.All those connected to President Rupiah Banda and would like to make money from the importation of maize must be reminded that mealie-meal is a highly political issue in this country. The reason for this is obvious.
    But it appears that this government is treating the issue of maize and mealie-meal as a money-making venture for all those connected to Rupiah, at the expense of Zambians.

    It’s good that a few patriots in the government department charged with the responsibility to ensure that Zambians do not consume genetically modified maize, or any genetically modif

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  35. modified maize.

    There is need for the government to decisively resolve this issue of maize and mealie-meal. For now, things are moving as though there is no government in place. Whilst the government meant well to subsidise maize to the millers, this objective is not being realised, looking at the reality. What is clear is that the government is wasting money by subsidising millers. We are told that the government is paying more than US $400 per metric tonne of maize and supplying the millers at a far reduced price, almost 50 per cent less.

    The millers, who are scarcely receiving maize from FRA at subsidised prices, are implementing the government’s objective by reducing wholesale

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  36. Since Zambia is a liberalised economy, there is no one to police these exploitative traders. So the intended government objective of reducing the price of mealie-meal is lost purely on account of its failure to manage the process. The government is controlling the millers but not the traders.

    The quickest solution to this mealie-meal problem is to flood the market with the commodity. But millers can only flood the market with mealie-meal if they have adequate supplies of maize. And adequate supplies of maize can only be realised if those involved in its importation are behaving in a more patriotic and transparent manner.

    What is happening now is that a few individuals closer to the c

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  37. What is happening now is that a few individuals closer to the corridors of power have hijacked the maize importation process. That is why FRA board chairman Costain Chilala and FRA executive director Dr Anthony Mwanaumo are having difficulties telling the nation who the suppliers of GMO maize are. Why shouldn’t Zambians know who these suppliers are when it is the taxpayer who will pay for this maize?

    The truth is that Chilala and Mwanaumo do not want to open the Pandora’s box by mentioning the suppliers because the buck might stop in the wrong place. So to avoid problems, they would rather not mention the suppliers’ names.

    But this is an open secret. Many Zambians know what is happe

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  38. You really surprise me imwe bantu,Why should you even direct someone to explain the shortage of maize when you same pipo were busy exporting amataba to neibouring countries like Zim and DRC.to make matters worse at a very low price.But when we as a nation start importing amataba we will do it at a very higher price.Zambia our beautiful country where are we going kanshi?

    Matworld

    LT award winner for :-j:-j:-j

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  39. But this is an open secret. Many Zambians know what is happening in this sector; they know who is pulling the strings. They know who is favouring which friends for selfish interests.

    It cannot be denied that there are cartels and a few individuals are making super profits as a result. The only interest they have is to line their pockets, not to serve or save Zambians. And if Zambians do not stand up and say no to this type of behaviour, sooner than later, mealie-meal will be beyond the reach of ordinary citizens.

    We remember that not too long ago, the Ministry of Agriculture announced that there were adequate maize stocks with local commercial farmers. A figure of around 90,000 metri

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  40. A figure of around 90,000 metric tonnes was mentioned. What happened to this maize? Why isn’t the government buying from local commercial farmers?

    We hope those in government today are learning lessons from what is happening to Frederick Chiluba and those who mismanaged public resources during his time. Some of them are already in prison.

    A precedent has well been set that no one is above the law. Today, those in government may think that they are in charge and therefore untouchable. But tomorrow is coming, when they will be called upon to account for their deeds and misdeeds while in government. We said the same things about Chiluba and his tandem of thieves, although we were dism

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  41. We said the same things about Chiluba and his tandem of thieves, although we were dismissed with contempt.

    As for Rupiah, we hope he is reminding his children that they are not government officials. There is time for everything.

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  42. LT same news for 2days surely,have you run out of news or what? Chili shani kanshi. Awe afumepo speaker nomba apa.

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  43. So that was what Rupiah and his sons had gone to plan in Mfuwe?
    Zambia one comedy-ukubuta yes, 10 steps forward 9 steps backwards.

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  44. This is NyamaSoya Government made simple. We tried winter maize, no one saw a winter cob.We shouted that we have bumper harvest, no one saw that harvest.We fail to run elections, the kwacha free falls/nose dives, Bola Pa Zed malabishi. I think the problems Pa Zed self inflicted, our Zed politicians thrive on this confusion to divide and rule us or we the Zambians too docile. Lets riot. Period, UNZA students use this route & get a response quickly. Thats the ONLY language Politicians hear quickly. It worked in K.K’s time, can work even now.

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  45. The presidents children think they can do any thing and everything. They are busy closing other peoples companies (Zambian airways)and cutting secretly. This Zamtel deal is wrong! very wrong!!! They are stealing from the people. Those who voted for RB must be happy now. Thats the goverment you wanted. :o:o:o:o[-x[-x~X(~X(**==**==:-w:-?:o:((:(

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  46. We are not doing ok. The presidents sons named in two deals gone bad? Who ever voted RB wasted their vote. very sad!!

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  47. #69-71. You are very much focused on the issue and you ‘ve raised valid points. It appears that those closely connected to the corridors of power have found themselves a niche in the maize marketing sector to suppress any other genuine competitor so as to enrich themselves.Whoever they are should realise that Zambians are not sleeping but are watching whatever is happening. Abash plunderers!!!!

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  48. Zambians eeeeeeeeeeeeehhhhhhhhhhh, you asked for it! I wish RB could go thru in 2011. Us Zambians are cowards only talk in proverbs or pama blog with fake names. We also easily forget quickly, flow with anything that comes our way and one wonders what type of people we have in this country.You are the same people who were saying Fred M’membe aya sana, now see? cant imagine without The Post.

    People lets think about our children, our future tomorrow,what type of human beings will they be with this kind of leadership yaba RB? I remember sometime back in Ghana when the government introduced taxi, people fought hard and before end of the day, there were heavy riots unfortunately pipo dead.

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  49. Zambia has at least 90,000 tons of maize in stock which the traders and farmers asked GRZ to buy at $410/t in November, but GRZ chose to import GMO maize at $485/t instead – for reasons which are now becoming clear.

    Now because the GMO status of the imports has been revealed and therefore can’t be offloaded onto the market, FRA has no maize to sell the millers. The millers will not buy ‘real-market’ maize at $410/t when their competition might be getting subsidised maize at half the price, so instead they stop milling. So we have a crazy situation where the country is sitting on big stocks of maize and we have a food shortage. Welcome back to the old days….

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  50. …..And if the traders and farmers are sitting on big maize stocks at the beginning of the 2009 maize harvest, no one will be there to buy this season’s maize….

    …Which means poor and confused pricing for both small and large farmers….

    …Which means less maize will be planted in 2009/2010….

    …Which means we will have a maize deficit for years to come!

    This whole episode is destroying agriculture in Zambia and is costing the tax payer an absolute fortune in subsidies that have no obvious end.

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  51. Lets also diversify to Matoke(banana plantains) potatoes and rice to keep ourselves alive. Basale na vi milisi vawo

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