Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Authorities Uncover 22,600 Bags of Mealie Meal in Chililabombwe


A joint team of law enforcement officers, comprising Zambia Police and Zambia National Services (ZNS), discovered a staggering 22,600 bags of mealie meal in Chililabombwe’s PP Zambia Compound. The large quantity of mealie meal, each weighing 25 kilograms, was confiscated in the early hours of Friday, raising concerns about potential smuggling activities to the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The seizure occurred as the officers conducted an operation in response to suspicions of illegal activities related to mealie meal distribution. The bags were found in various shops lacking proper supporting documents, suggesting a possible attempt at smuggling the essential commodity across the border.

Chililabombwe District Commissioner Precious Njekwa expressed her dismay at the situation and highlighted the negative impact of mealie meal smuggling on local food security. Njekwa urged citizens to resist the temptation of engaging in illegal activities, emphasizing that authorities remain vigilant in the border town.

Lamenting the lack of cooperation from some citizens, Njekwa stated, “It is sad to discover that there are some businessmen keeping bags of mealie-meal in some warehouses in PP-Zambia for purposes of selling it illegally, thereby negatively affecting mealie-meal prices.”

To address the issue, the seized mealie meal will be stored securely while security officers continue to collect from all remaining warehouses for further investigations. Njekwa urged the local business community in Chililabombwe to conduct their operations within the confines of the law, emphasizing the importance of adhering to legal practices for the well-being of everyone.


  1. For as long as mealie meal in Zambia remains cheaper than DRC, Malawi, Kenya and Tanzania, smuggling will not stop.
    Prices in selected neighbouring countries
    Malawi;K500 (25kg)
    Kenya;K130(for 10Kg bags)
    The entire SADC region knows that Zambian mealie is too cheap

    • There is a simple solution to smuggling: subsidise the farmers and not the millers. If you subsidise the farmers, they will produce more. When they produce more, they will have the advantage over millers, who will not be able to compete with them for exports. Let the producers reap the rewards, and when all these people who are eating cheap mealie meal in Lusaka and Copperbelt see farmers driving brand new cars, they will leave the cities, and return to the villages to do farming themselves. I am a die hard Kaunda supporter, but this is the one aspect of strategy the old man never quite grasped. Even if he had grasped it, he would have never been allowed by the West to subsidise production. Just ask Bakili Muluzy of Malawi..

    • So what, fcvk your neighbors countries? Your mothers in villages are starving and prefer to sell Congolese banyamurenges?
      Mwe fi bantu fi PF tamwaba nafisuma, now you don’t want cheap food.

    • It doesn’t work that way in civilized countries.
      There is a petrol station in my neighborhood which has been saling petrol half price all others in the same street since covid. You know what we don’t buy drums and stock in out yards or go resale in neighborhoods. Customers go there, feel up cars, go inside buy beers etc.
      I have no time to teach you dulls.

    • It appears that in Zambia everything is priced cheaply: electricity, maize, petroleum fuel, rentals, transport, etc. And most people want everything Zambian to be expensive so we can compete with our neighbours.
      If our taxes are too high, the West want us to bring them down to reflect what is in the region as if we belong to the EU bloc?
      If China sell the world goods that are less expensive then the country is doing unfair trade.
      Should Zambia hike prices to suit the pull demand for Kenya, Congo DR, Malawi or Southern Africa? That’s not a solution. Though it tells you that the market is immense for Zambia to economically, but cautiously exploit.

    • Why isn’t there smuggling of bread or wheat between Canada and the US? Between France and the UK. Our politicians should be asking How can we normalize trade between Zambia and DRC? Instead of facing and yapping about the same problem from 1964 to 2024

  2. It’s obvious there is demand for the commodity, instead of confiscating get them to trade properly or tax them. Why make a storm out of a tea cup? Grow more maize if there is serious demand ku ma neighbour.

    • Stop making excuses for criminals. Lock the motherf@ckers up for illegally smuggling mealie meal. Take away their houses and cars as an example to other criminally-minded *****s who might be tempted to do the same thing. Once people in these places see this, they think twice about flouting the law. These *****s produce nothing, and try to get rich by crime… no more!!!

  3. Let them sale. That is forex in our country. The president said its trade not smuggling. Give people trading license.They are not stealing. Also liberalise mukula export please

  4. You see now! You put your own people into problems because of your own policies. If we want to champion free market, then let people trade with whoever wants to buy their goods.

  5. Mealie Meal is a senstive issue we dont have the stocks to last till next year
    do you want smuggling to continue without checks and balances
    there are channels to be followed for exports nobody is stopping them if legal
    Some on here want their cake and to eat it

  6. It’s unfortunate that despite the many challenges that we’ve experienced, we haven’t invested in efforts to secure our boarder. Zambians can’t be accused of smuggling when they’re caught with goods within the boundaries of Zambia. This kind of thing has been going on since UNIP days. Sometimes even innocent citizens lose their hard-earned goods through such obnoxious law enforcement. There are many Zambians that are sufficiently qualified in security matters, surely can’t we come up with a system that separates good from bad? Let’s not be like UPND dimwits that think that whoever speaks Tonga is their member and Bemba is PF

  7. ………..

    As stated above………

    The only solution is to increase production……….

    If you are unable to do it, invite forigne commercial farming companies to come and produce maize instead of concentrating on building shopping malls……….

    We have plenty land

  8. The Zambian government is the worst culprit. They sell Zesco power to Congo while the citizens are grappling with electricity blues. Doesn’t logic say you first satisfy the local market before exporting anything? Didn’t our executive export all our maize and mealie meal before putting a hold on this staple? When was it illegal for any merchant in Zambia to posses a paltry 22, 600 bags (565 tonnes) of uunga in any warehouse or shop to resell?
    Ciwamina Nja kuluma saawe.

  9. It is perfectly legal to buy and resell mealie within zambia and even store as many bags as you like as long as you have the receipts that you purchased it legally. If a Congolese comes to your shop to buy 1000 bags with cash then who are you to refuse. You can sell to whoever you want within the country as that does not amount to smuggling or breaking any law. Now how they take it across is their business.

  10. ………

    Indeed this meal meal shortage defines us as Africans………

    We have land…….we have demand…….we have rivers……..he have the climate

    Yet we are fighting and arguing about silly things regarding this meal shortage……..

    Every argument should be about why we are not producing more meal, instead ………

    We are arguing about who is smuggling, who is allowed to sell…….


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