By JACKSON MAPAPAYI
NORTH-WESTERN Province Minister Robert Lihefu has claimed that the region has not been affected by the shortage of mealie meal that has suddenly hit most parts of the country and is therefore food secure.
Mr Lihefu said people should not panic but remain calm as there is enough maize in all Food Reserve Agency (FRA) sheds.
This came to light when he toured milling companies in Solwezi and Kalumbila respectively.
He disclosed that to cushion the impact of the shortage of the commodity, the provincial administration has agreed with millers to be offloading over 1, 500 bags of the commodity on a weekly basis.
“Let me take this opportunity to assure the people in the province that the region is food secure and that we have enough stock in our FRA sheds. Therefore, they should not panic, Mr Lihefu told journalists after touring the milling plants in the region.
Mr Lihefu has allayed fears of shortage of mealie meal in the province, saying what was experienced in Solwezi last week was but a hiccup in the distribution network of millers.
And Mutanda General Manager Joseph Kapila assured the minister that the company is doing everything possible to ensure that it offloads enough mealie meal on the market.
He said the company is trying to cover a backlog of supply both on the Copperbelt and North Western depots by increasing production at its plant.
“So that’s what we are doing so that we satisfy the market, we do not want to let down our customers,” Mr Kapila said.