Power and Politics

Kantanshi lawmaker, Mumba, calls for maize export restrictions


The Zambian  government should  take a cautious step on maize exports to avert possible mealie meal shortages ,Kantanshi Member of Parliament (MP) Anthony Mumba has said.

Mumba said  the 2022/2023  farming looks ‘elusive’, because of late distribution of inputs by the Zambian agriculture Ministry.

Agriculture Minister Mtolo Phiri recently  maintained that the country had enough maize reserves to last up to the next season and urged the citizenry not to panic.

But  Mumba said the price of mealie meal  in Mufulira and other areas  was already beyond the reach of most households in Mufulira.

“We should cautiously export, that is my advice because things are not looking good especially that fertilizer distribution has been mishandled for the 2022/2023 rainy season and President Hakainde Hichilema acknowledged this fact during his end of year press conference, so no need to ‘beat about the bush’,” he said.

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Mumba said as for  Kantanshi, there were enough rains to support agriculture activities, but the way fertilizer distribution was being handled left much to be appreciated by stakeholders.

“As for Kantanshi we have enough rain to support farming activities but the fertilizer distribution has been mishandled ,” he said.

Mumba said in an interview on Friday that any deficit in maize supply in the country would escalate mealie meal prices beyond the reach of ordinary households.

He said with the expected power outages, ordinary people would be affected the most if the price of the staple food kept on escalating.

“Already those who deal in salons, welding and other businesses that depend on electricity to operate are feeling the impact on load shedding, so the need to keep the price  of mealie meal stable is critical,” Mumba said.

He said while the country should brace itself for economic challenges,implementing some of the solutions President Hichilema was advancing during the press engagement would ameliorate the situation.

Mumba said like the President observed, there was a need to cautiously handle the economy for better outcomes as the country tries to navigate the debt challenge.


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