Thursday, February 29, 2024

FRA urged to secure tents to protect maize already delivered at depots

Share

Chizingizi Ward Councillor Wycliffe Phiri in Chasefu has appealed to the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) to secure tents in order to protect maize already delivered at depots from getting soaked by rains.

In a statement made available to ZANIS, Mr Phiri said the maize at Mnyukwa satellite depot has been soaked following the area experiencing early rains.

He expressed worry that the maize lying at the depot, waiting for repackaging, might go to waste because the temporal bags were now torn and the grain is soaked.

The civic leader has called on FRA to expedite the supply of empty grain bags to farmers and purchase of maize in his ward.

He is worried that any further delays by the FRA to supply farmers with empty grain bags on time and purchase maize will result in farmers incurring into big loses.

Mr Phiri, who is also a farmer, disclosed that some farmers have started withdrawing their grain they brought for sale from FRA depots and are now selling the maize to briefcase buyers.

“I am appealing to the government to look into the matter as quickly as possible before the situation worsened,” Mr Phiri said.

Yesterday, FRA Public Relations Coordinator John Chipandwe announced in a statement that the agency will immediately resume the purchase of maize grain following concerns by farmers that delivered their white maize to satellite depots countrywide.

However, Mr. Chipandwe said the purchase will be restricted to maize already delivered at various satellite Depots countrywide, adding that no new deliveries will be bought by the agency.

He further urged farmers to exercise patience with regards to the delivery of empty grain bags as the agency has continued delivering them as and when received from suppliers.

“It’s worth noting that FRA bags take a bit of time to manufacture as they are special bags specially meant for long term storage of grain, hence the seeming delay in the delivery of the bags to depots,” Mr Chipandwe said.

And Government has assured farmers in Manyinga district, in North-western Province with continuity, in buying maize through the Food Reserve Agency (FRA).

The government has further committed itself in ensuring that all farming inputs are delivered on time, to all farmers across the country.

This came to light when Acting Manyinga District Commissioner Kenneth Chinyama inspected FRA satellite depots in Manyinga, yesterday.

Mr Chinyama said his office has been receiving several concerns from local farmers regarding the alleged stoppage of buying of maize by FRA.

“I wish to state that the government has heard your cries and would like to assure everyone whose maize has already been delivered to FRA satellite depots, that it will be bought,” Mr Chinyama assured.

The Acting District Commissioner further said that government is aware of the spillages of maize, soaked maize and the need for empty grain bags which will soon be delivered to the district.

And Steven Samanana, a farmer, said he is happy that the government has listened to the concerns made by the farmers.

“We were worried that our maize will go to waste, I have already delivered my 350 bags of maize to FRA, I am now happy that the authority has assured that they will purchase it,” he said.

Another farmer Lloyd Kalwiji implored the government to consider providing satellite depots with adequate tents, before the onset of the rains, to prevent the maize grains from being soaked by rains.

“We are kindly asking the government to quickly assist us with tents to cover our maize at the depots, as some of our maize has already been soaked by the rains,” Mr Kalwiji said.

He further implored FRA to speed up the buying process, adding that most farmers want to concentrate on this farming season.

3 COMMENTS

  1. I thought FRA and the maize buying was a center piece for the PF GRZ , a marvel of smoth operations ????…..

    Every system is rotten………

    Things only worked haphazardly because of bribes and cash handouts for political favours ……..

    There is no long lasting system in place……

    Everything has to be rebuilt……

  2. The Food Reserve Agency is aware of what transpired in Chasefu District and sympathizes with farmers whose maize got soaked and is saddened that farmers’ maize got soaked, a situation that is very regrettable. However, the Agency reiterates the fact that it has been urging farmers to secure their maize while at depots and most farmers have responded favorably to the advice. The Agency is still urging farmers at depots countrywide to ensure that their maize is adequately secured to protect it from being soaked as the rains are unpredictable.

    John Chipandwe
    FRA Public Relations Coordinator
    *****

Comments are closed.

Read more

Local News

Discover more from Lusaka Times-Zambia's Leading Online News Site - LusakaTimes.com

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue Reading