Mazabuka Central Member of Parliament Garry Nkombo has challenged Government to justify why Food Reserve Agency (FRA) will buy a 50kg bag of maize during this year’s marketing season at K60.

FRA recently announced that only 500,000 tonnes of maize and 2,100 tonnes of paddy rice and 20, 000 tonnes of Soya Beans will be bought at a total cost of over 900 million kwacha.

And the Mazabuka lawmaker has alleged that the Patriotic Front led Government is bent to destroy the agriculture sector in Zambia.

Nkombo said Government should have subsidized the nation at production level and not at consumption level.

“We challenge Government to justify why Food Reserve Agency (FRA) will buy a 50kg bag of maize during this year’s marketing season at K60” Nkombo said

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25 COMMENTS

  1. There are many that claim to be experts in agriculture. This is the same reason why the economy of Zambia will take long before it can truly diversify from mining.

    Miners look for their own inputs and capital and government has never bought copper from them but the producers must endure and deal with the London Metal Exchange …

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    • Dr Caleb Fundanga, former BoZ Governor and current president IFE Zambia has publishe Part 2 of his Economic Policy U-turns – A story of the country’s economic journey in the wilderness. This is must read piece and it is on Lusaka Times. We are being led by a Cimbwi No Plan PF Govt.

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    • This is a genuine concern Hon MP. How can a bag of 50kg of grain maize which I presume produces close to the same weight in mealie-meal (maize powder) coat only K60.00? That’s a measly $6.00!

      Now hear this, Iwisa (Breakfast mealie meal) costs $9.00 or £6.99 in the UK! Do your maths and see how these farmers have been let down. The government should consider forming some Miller’s Co-operatives where these farmers will belong and have their maize ground for sale or export.

      You can’t seriously diversify into agriculture without a strategy of how the farmers are going to market their products for a profit.

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    • …. Iwisa Mealie-Meal from South Africa costs $9.00 or £6.99 for a 5kg back rather ^

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    • …for a 5kg bag in the UNITED KINGDOM. I tethering on a weak signal. Sorry.

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    • Garry ask State house. Dora already made a public sale of maize to Kenya. The sales price was

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  2. Mr Nkombo, mwamonekeni!
    I wish we had you in givernment even as minister of agriculture. Unfortunately you and UPNDonkeys party will never form government. What a pity but what do we expect from donkeys anyway.
    So are you Donkeys gonna debate this in parliament since you may be suspended again?

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  3. Not only are they destroying the agriculture of Zambia but also the mining and cement factories which employs many many good Zambia. Have you heard that ZCCM Pius Kasolo wanst to close Ndola Lime Company??? zccmminerhateskasolo.blogspot.co.za

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  4. THANKS GARRY, this is what you should have been doing! FOR ALMOST A YEAR, YOU HAVE FORGOTTEN YOUR DUTY as a GOVERNMENT IN WAITING and obsessed yourselves with FIGHTING for an individual instead of the NATION!! These LOW MAIZE PRODUCER PRICES THIS SEASON WILL CERTAINLY AFFECT OUTPUT NEXT YEAR, we may even have maize shortages that may push our prices, even higher and create a bigger crisis!!

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  5. Hon Nkombo has a point govt does not realise that they killing agriculture by exploit farmers. PF has misplaced priorities even in ministerial appointments Dora and the information minister are classical examples. It’s confusion after confusion.

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  6. ba Garry how do you expect the meal price to go down if you buy the maize grain at high prices

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    • Precisely!! The sad part about opposition in Zambia, and almost in Africa, is that they are ready to rush to media to denounce the government at every opportunity. But it is the same mouth of Nkombo which was saying Zambians are suffering because the staple food, mealie meal is too expensive-K120!! I remember very well that government said they will not participate in the maize marketing exercise but instead leave everything to private players and market forces now Nkombo and upnd wants government to start throwing millions of dollars to subsidies to spoon feed the farmers?? CAN UPND RUN A GOVERNMENT????

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  7. That is how dictatorial corrupt clueless governments work.. …they just impose without explaining……same with the rubbish collection tax that will be imposed on talk time…..the council will not tell Lusaka residents what the land rates they collect are used for…..same with road tax collection while they are putting toll gates every where….

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  8. I don’t agree with some of concerns raised by the honorable but I too would like the government to explain the reasons behind the new price.

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    • Ndanje it’s simple. Production was 3 times more than consumption. Government subsidised heavily to yield these results especially to peasants. Why should govt again buy at high price which they initially subsidised. It’s like you pay an upfront or deposit and on completion of the purchase you pay the outright price. Besides if mealers buy at a cheaper price there is no way the price of 25th bag will cost more than k35. Come Nov expect ubunga to sell below k40.

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  9. Finally, finally a United Dunderhead representative has spoken sense! Away from the usual bitter, petty and hateful statements they are known to make But he hasn’t even stated at what amount FRA should set the floor price??????? Typical of dunderheads!

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    • 2020 don’t forget to factor on other grains. Mind you fra is not only buying maize grains. Besides govt has opened market and is not restricting who to sell to. Exports are allowed without price controls. K60 is the lowest they can sell meaning they can price it according to market demands.

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  10. Let me break this down the way it should be broken down and no United Dunderhead should dare plagiarise this: Farmers need at least 1kg of maize to be at K1.5 per kg inorder to break even- that’s only K0.3 above the current K1.2 set as the floor price.FRA is buying up to 500,000 tons that works out as K600,000,000 at K1.2 now if the State purchased instead at K1.5 that increases the total purchase amount to K750,000,000 which is an extra K150,000,000 – which is in the range of USD 18,000,000 definitly something the State is able to afford if you consider the importance of this exercise in ensuring food security for the nation. Failure to provide farmers a breakeven price will result in loss less maize production in the coming year leading to famine and a costly exercise of importing…

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    • Ctn … Failure to provide farmers a breakeven price will result in loss for the farmer, less maize production in the coming year leading to famine and a costly exercise of importing maize which will be more expensive that spending this 18million USD which is a small amount when you consider the benefits to be achieved from it!

      If farmers have enough cash as a result of at least a price of K1.5 per kg those funds will be reinjected into the local economy back into circulation boosting growth and ensuring food security for next year! Simple economics which the so called opposition have failed to speak about!

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    • Please factor in the subsidized inputs which Govt took at maybe 75% through the E-Voucher or FISP. Govt has to recoup some of the money which was probably borrowed. Nkombo has the freedom to purchase maize at K150 per 50kg bag from the allowances he steals at parliamentt

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  11. Saddest part of the maize meal saga is that we’ve failed to find a solution. Kaunda gave “almost free ” mealie meal for more than two decades. It never solved the problem but only increased demand which in turn emptied state coffers. He tried to increase the price in order to reduce state expenditure, but this only resulted in food riots .

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  12. The justification Garry is that Government will not subsides this time around because they have to re- do the Properties you burnt down and compensate the marketeers who’s goods you destroyed. Simple and straight forward.

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  13. These chaps question everything before they think. That is why I cannot vote for them, they never mean well.

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  14. Instead of politicking Zambians must learn to boycott things they are not happy with. Our founding fathers used boycott as weapon to achieve their goals. If transport fares are increased just walk to wherever you’re going, if a police officer solicits for a bribe refuse. Even the maize don’t sell to FRA and you’ll see their reaction. But because we hate “inconvenience ” we are ready to be exploited. Success is not built from a comfortable position. ..you’ve got to sacrifice.

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  15. The issue of maize price per bag should have been debated in the parliament, honorable MP Garry Nkombo and your fellow UPND MPs are the let down. When we most needed you to debate about issues that affects the poor Zambians you were busy running / staying away from parliament. Raising your concern on the media will save no purpose as the only right channel in which the issue of maize should have been tabled is the parliament.
    We have no representation in terms of the opposition in parliament because whenever you are required to avail yourselves and debate your always shun the sittings. The issue of maize price is something which was supposed to be immensely debated in the house and a reasonable price should have been arrived at now. But now it like trying to drink spilled milk it is…

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