Thursday, February 29, 2024

With Skyrocketing Prices, Government Challenged to Actualize Permanent Price Reduction of Mealie Meal Prices

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The Zambia Consumer Association (ZACA) has challenged the government to actualize its plans to reduce mealie meal prices permanently.

ZACA executive secretary Juba Sakala has charged that for a long time now, the government has been talking about finding a lasting solution to the rising mealie meal prices but no solution is found.

Mr. Sakala said that it is high time government desists from politicking on the matter and stops issuing statements aimed at appeasing consumers and that that government is well aware that it is supposed to incentivize mealie meal production but wonders what has caused them this inertia.

His comment follows a statement by Agriculture Minister Reuben Mtolo-Phiri who recently announced that the government is collaborating with millers on identifying areas in which they can be incentivized.

But last week Defence Minister Ambrose Lufuma also disclosed that as a way of cushioning the high mealie meal prices in the country, the government has through the Zambia National Service’s eagles brand reduced the prices of 25 Kilogram bag of breakfast meal to K125 while the 25 KG bag of roller meal is now selling at k85.

This week, Agriculture minister Reuben Mtolo-Phiri said that the government is currently engaging with millers to arrive at incentives that will enable the country to see a reduction in the cost of mealie meal locally which has been on an upward trajectory recently.

Mr Phiri said that the government has already allowed millers to buy maize from the Food Reserve Agency-FRA- and also allowed to continue exports with a condition that this should help reduce the cost of mealie meal locally.

Mr. Phiri said that his ministry is currently talking to millers and other stakeholders on possible incentives for cheaper mealie meal on the domestic market especially that government is concerned with the ever-increasing price of mealie meal despite the country having surplus maize.

Mr. Phiri said that government is hopeful that millers will consider slightly reducing the price of the country’s staple food following a drop in fuel pump price and the export facility that allows for more profits that should essentially cushion the local market costs.

Mealie meal in some places is currently fetching as high as K170 per 25kg bag of breakfast.

20 COMMENTS

  1. The price of mealie meal can’t reduce because farmers are demanding a better price for their produce. Government can’t subsidize both the input and the product. So the statement by ZACA doesn’t make sense especially that it’s from educated fellows. Zambia won’t get anywhere with this kind of thinking. Those that till the land don’t sell all their maize, they reserve some for their consumption. It’s mostly the lazy chaps on the streets doing tipempako tandizo that get affected by higher mealie meal prices. This was the reason KK told people to get back to the land. We still have a lot of idle land. If you can’t afford life in town please relocate. There’s no easy way out of problems. I get encouraged when I see some civil servants working on the land to cushion their income,…

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  2. I have always advocated for the mealie meal issue to be delinked from politics. Even those who get FISP inputs don’t make profit at all…. you hire a tractor, labour to help with sowing, putting fertilizer, weeding, chemicals, harvesting, shelling, transport…all these are expenses and you only get K2.40 per kg when maybe your cost was K2.20 per kg ( if you are lucky). Government (from Unip to Upnd) should have been brave enough to make maize farming attractive by not controlling prices.

  3. What ZACA is advocating for is the fulfillment of the promise h² made to the Zambian people. Nothing wrong with that. Mealie meal has to come to K50 per 25kg bag.
    Simple logic, a farmer was also promised a lower production cost by reducing the price of fertilizer to K250 per 50kg bag. Let’s be debating what comes first, Chicken or Egg? Every which way baal must fix this.
    Umunwe baalaile umusunga wenda uwa konkomana.
    Tafiba mwebwa.
    Tuli pano.

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  4. Liars are liars they can’t change…They lied to the people of Zambia….Mr bufi has no sense of shame it’s normal to tell bufi.

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  5. The sweet lies,sweet lies,sweet lies have built a beautiful castle without foundation. Will this newly built castle built by sweet lies withstand the coming political wind storm?Cry my beloved country…..cry my beloved country….

  6. And this skyrocketing mealie meal price will have a big influence on the REAL inflation rate. But inflation as calculated by the government does NOT take into account mealie meal, and so the rate as published by the UPND is fantasy. Ordinary citizens do NOT have a car and they DO eat mealie meal. But with petrol in and mealie meal out inflation sums are useless!

  7. I thought zambia was meant to turn into heaven after upnd took over. Is that not what your hh promised us all ? Can we agree that he is a failed liar? Mealie prices are now higher than they were before elections. Soon you will need to choose between feeding yourself and having a roof on your head. Rotten government

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  8. For clarity and especially to the Chief Misleading Officer, UPND has five years, you can only judge them after 5 years, don’t talk too soon, what will you say if at the end of the five years UPND brings mealie meal to K20 per 25 Kg bag. UPND is working, no relationship with the ubomba mwibala alya mwibala regime kind of working

  9. Some tribal begot has nothing to say except tribal inclined views. However, that will not shorten the long, long period UPND and HH will be in power and continue to correct, clean the mess left by PF and ECL. Zambian people rejected PF rule in August 2021 and continued to reject as evidenced by Kabwata by elections on 3rd Feb 2021. 5 years plus is a long, long way bitterness will choke you to death, just give it-up, begin to be realistic and provide better checks and balance to the good governance of UPND popular though out Zambia. Just delivered violent election free in Kabwata.

  10. Hold on,upnd bloggers!
    What is wrong with asking the current govt to simply fulfill their campaign promises?
    This excuse about the mess left by PF doesn’t hold water because upnd made these promises with FULL knowledge of what was obtaining on the ground.
    Unless there’s another word for false promises, it’s called lying.

  11. The promises will be fulfilled, that is why they have a five year mandate, the mandate is 5 years and not 5 months

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  12. 5 year term is not the problem, the problem is that people made so simple during the campaigns. Things like giving hope by giving miraculous time frames in which to fix these problems. It’s like marrying a divorcee…. find out the reasons she is devorcee.

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