The President of Citizens First (CF), Harry Kalaba, has called on the Zambian government to find a long-term solution to mitigate the high prices of mealie meal, the staple food in Zambia. In a recent statement, Kalaba expressed his concern about the temporary measures taken by the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) in agreement with millers to sell a bag of mealie meal at K160 ex-factory price after releasing 250,000 metric tonnes of maize to millers nationwide.
“Such measures are only temporary,” said Kalaba. “Once the amount of maize offered to millers runs out, the high prices will be the order of the day. We need a deliberate policy to mitigate the price of mealie meal,” he added.
To address this issue, Kalaba suggested that the Zambia National Service (ZNS) be called upon to help cushion the mealie meal situation. “The Zambia National Service, their job is food security. We need them to start getting mealie meal,” said Kalaba. He believes that ZNS, with its training in providing services to the country, should acquire land on a large scale to grow maize for milling purposes. “Government needs a deliberate policy to maintain the price of a staple food. What they have done is to release the strategic reserve of the millers that they have trust to give them mealie meal for two months. We need ZNS to begin doing mealie meal and have state farms. That would be for the purpose of maintaining the staple food,” he explained.
In addition to the mealie meal situation, Kalaba also provided alternative solutions to the fuel challenges faced by Zambia. “The remedy to the fuel challenges we are facing is to open Indeni refinery so that Zambia can have a bulk reserve,” said Kalaba. He believes that with the Indeni refinery running, there will be no need for the Energy Regulation Board to announce prices every month because the country will be cushioned. “Indeni has got the capacity to do storage fuel for 6 months. But somebody doesn’t want to do that because once they bring back Indeni, yonse amadilu yalapwa,” he said.
Kalaba has called on the government to find a long-term solution to the high prices of mealie meal and to consider his alternative solutions to the fuel challenges faced by the country. He believes that with the right policies and deliberate action, the country can overcome its current challenges.
“It is time for the government to take action and find a sustainable solution to these challenges,” said Kalaba. “We must work together to ensure the well-being of our citizens and the stability of our nation.”
I agree with Harry Kalaba regarding the strategic use of ZNS in producing food in bulk. They have the expertise and only need more land and more equipment.
I had suggested this strategy a year ago to a cabinet colleague but it was not taken.
Let Cabinet issue directives to ZNS to do two things:
1. To produce strategic maize reserves for FRA to cushion small scale farmer production
2. Grow wheat and other cash crops on a large scale and export to needy markets to earn foreign exchange
We expected better from the UPND but what we are seeing is unbelievable.
Kalaba makes sense. In fact, ZNS can even open miling plants to compete with the private sector.
They are already doing what you are suggesting, shows that our opposition have no new ideas period. How can you go suggest something you’re seeing happening.
Unworkable. Just encourage farming
Maize prices fluctuate as dictates of supply and demand. When supply is low and demand is high off season then price is high. When supply is too much and demand is low during harvest time then prices are low. Mwanawasa had the right idea of growing winter maize so that supply can be constant throughout the year to mitigate prices but PF never followed it up.
Very funny character. This man was behind Lungu, ignoring the Presidence of Guy Scott.
Even goingbto Congo without permissions from the President. What a useless coup leader. Now heli’s telling people how Zambians can be helped. What a useless MALINGALA
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