Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Siavonga residents bemoan increased mealie meal prices

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Siavonga residents have bemoaned the increased prices of mealie meal on the local market. The residents have since called on the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) to release more maize to the local millers in the district in order to stabilise the cost.

One of the senior citizens in Siavonga district, Lucia Mwenda of Kaleya township, told ZANIS that mealie meal have become very expensive in the district due to the short supply of maize.

Ms Mwenda complained that a 10 kilogramme bag of breakfast mealie meal is now costing between K95 and K110 while a 25 kilogramme bag of roller meal is selling at K230.

“Mealie meal is expensive to buy, government should come to our aid. As a senior citizen, where will I find money to help me to take care of the orphans, l am a farmer and my crops dried up due to a dry spell,” she said.

She has since called on the FRA to consider supplying maize to local millers in the district so that mealie meal prices can be reduced.

Ms Mwenda said retailers are saying the rise in the mealie meal prices is as a result of the high cost of transport which they incur when they order the commodity from Lusaka.

Another senior citizen in Kaleya area, Melesiana Zimba, called on government to quickly provide maize grain to the district as mealie meal has become unaffordable to buy.

“As old as l am, l sell door mats at K20 each and people do not buy every day and mealie meal is now at K110 or 120 for a K10 kg breakfast bag. Now with my door mat business how will l manage to take care of my three orphans,” Ms Zimba lamented.

Ms Zimba stated that government should quickly intervene and address the mealie meal prices with local millers so that they can start producing the commodity in the district.

She feared that the district may soon start experiencing an increase in crime rate if the price of mealie meal does not stabilise soon.

She said most people lost their livelihoods due to crop failure this farming season.

And a Siavonga youths, Joseph Katongo, of Game township also urged government to consider setting up a Zambia National Service (ZNS) depot or milling plant so that cheap mealie meal can be provided to the residents” Ms Katongo suggested.

Meanwhile, Siavonga District Commissioner, Geoffrey Jakopo, said government is aware of the increasing prices of mealie meal in the district.

Mr Jakopo said plans have been put in place to partner with the local millers so that FRA can start supplying maize to them as a way of addressing the escalating prices of mealie meal prices in Siavonga.

He also said plans are under way for ZNS to establish milling depots in the district.

“As government, we are not pleased with the rising mealie meal prices in the district and to this effect, we will partner with the local miller so that FRA can supply maize and the retailers stop ordering the commodity from outside,” he said.

Mr Jakopo warned mealie meal retailers and residents against entertaining Zimbabweans buying mealie meal in bulk.

“I am sending a warning to Siavonga mealie meal shop owners and Siavonga residents smuggling mealie meal to Zimbabwe to stop immediately to avoid unnecessary mealie meal shortage in Siavonga district,” Mr Jakopo cautioned.

9 COMMENTS

    • @Mwata, People made the right choice. Right now the UPND government is trying to stabilize the economy which had nearly collapsed.
      Why are the people of Morocco and Kenya on the street? High cost of living.
      Really, did you expect the UPND government to repay the billion-dollar debt in the first month of coming to power?
      Yes, things will get worse before they become better.

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    • Katana

      We heard about that economic theory from the madam, HHVP, how prices have to go up before they swing down.
      Do you religiously believe in that “krap”? You better not. It won’t ever happen.

    • @katana full respect to your opinion, though I strongly disagree. We need to be realistic and look at things as they are.
      A lot of things where changed under pressure from IMF. Instead of having a gradual process, they went with sudden changes and when the economy is undergoing shock, we start giving excuses. The truth is that upnd DID NOT plan. They thought running an economy is simply “making decisions” and “making changes” without a thorough analysis of the reality. This is why they are referring and blaming pf for everything.
      They promised to fix things and that’s what the man on the street voted for. He is not interested in theories. He wants nshima on the table. That’s what UPND missed.

    • To add to it, this pandering to the west is about to backfire terribly. Western economies are in serious trouble. Especially the US. The dollar is losing value. In fact a new international currency is being launched by China, India, Russia, Brazil….that’s about 50% of the worlds economy if am not mistaken. And hh has been shunning China. I will let you do the math on the implications.
      These things, it’s not about having economic theories that do a uni-variable analysis. You need to do a multi-variable analysis.

  1. Why has the momentum of mealie meal smuggling increased lately? Maybe we over exported our own. Perhaps, the neighbours’ demands are overwhelming. Maybe the new vast market hints on Zambia to commercialise maize production. Have our Zambian planners failed us?
    Properly rallied 2021/22 farming season has given us the current troubled maize stock, what will happen next year when we will have at play the haphazard inadequate 2022/23 farming calendar? Are our expected GeeMmOo inflows going to mitigate the disaster? Government keeps reassuring us but indicators are a gloomy state. Where is the problem and how do we go round it?

  2. These are the same strongholds that voted on tribal lines for their fellow failure. Continue suffering you f00Is. You will soon learn

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  3. Countries are busy with infrastructure development and transport network such as high speed rail and we are struggling with food…WHAT IS WRONG WITH US ZAMBIANS OR RATHER ‘AFRICANS’……after campaigning very hard on the food issues now the same President doesn’t even know what to do….talk is cheap

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