By HELEN WITTI
CENTRAL Province Permanent Secretary Milner Mwanakampwe says the current mealie meal shortage that some parts of central province and the country at large is experiencing is artificial.
Speaking during a media briefing in Kabwe recently, Mr Mwanakampwe said traders are causing this fake shortage of mealie meal as they are buying in bulk and hiding the stock.
He disclosed that mealie meal is being offloaded by Kalonga milling plant at an affordable price of K120 for roller meal and K150 per 25 kilogramme bag of breakfast meal.
Mr Mwanakampwe noted with concern that some shop owners are taking advantage of the situation and unreasonably selling the commodity at an exorbitant price.
He said government is doing everything possible to ensure that its citizens are food secured.
A spot check revealed some Milling depots closed as they did not have the commodity, while others only had five-kilogram packs as well as a few 25 kg bags of roller meal.
But a check from FVG milling plant, found the company milling and loading the commodity enroute to all its depots in central province and some parts of copper belt province.
FVG Milling Plant Manager Pramod Kumar, says the milling plant has the capacity to mill 200 metric tonnes per day and as such is fully stocked.
Mr Kumar also his company is supplying most of the chain stores such as Choppies and they are ensuing that no individual gets more than one bag at a time.
Meanwhile, Kabwe residents are calling for government to quickly control the mealie meal hiked prices by some traders and shortages.
In an interview, a resident of Kabwe Mable Mbambi has pleaded with government to look in the plight of ordinary citizens who can not afford to buy mealie meal at exorbitant prices currently pegged at K220 per 25kg bag.
Zambia aims to have a diversified, private sector-driven competitive economy providing equal opportunities for entrepreneurship and investment.
Zambia also has a vision to have a country free from hunger, poverty and other forms of deprivation.-NAIS