The Zambia Cooperative Federation (ZCF) has completed the installation of two solar powered milling plants in Kasisi area of Chongwe District.
The milling plants which are funded by government under the Presidential milling initiative are expected to start operations next week.
Speaking when he toured the facility and met headmen and head women in senior Chieftainess Nkomesha’s chiefdom in Kasisi area, ZCF Operations Manager Derick Sokoni urged the traditional leaders to ensure that committees and cooperatives are formed to oversee the operations of the milling plants.
Mr. Sokoni also urged the headmen to identify qualified youths who will be trained in operating the milling plants in their localities.
He said that government will soon send empty bags and maize so that the milling plants can start operating.
Mr. Sokoni further urged the headmen to encourage their subjects and cooperatives in the area not to sell their maize to briefcase buyers at exploitative prices but instead sell to cooperatives at reasonable prices.
And Mr. Sokoni indicated that the seventy thousand worth solar milling plants should be guarded jealously by the cooperatives and the community.
He also said that engineers will be sent in all provinces and areas were these plants have been installed to help with the technical operation s.
Speaking at the same meeting Lusaka District Commissioners Davison Mulenga said the coming of solar milling plants will help reduce the price of mealie meal to affordable levels for ordinary Zambians.
Meanwhile Senior Headman Kanchubi has called on cooperatives in the area to be active and creative if they are to succeed in running the milling business.
The traditional leader said that cooperatives should avoid being active only when getting inputs under the Fertilizer Input Support Programme (FISP).