Government has assured the nation that the price of mealie meal will not be increased.
Briefing the press on the resolutions made by cabinet yesterday, Information and Broadcasting Services minister Chishimba Kambwili explained that the fundamentals in the production line of the staple food have remained unchanged to warrant a price hike in mealie meal.
Mr Kambwili who is also Chief government spokesperson said the country has enough maize stock adding that government will not tolerate unnecessary price hikes of the staple food.
He said government will always endeavour to protect the poor people by ensuring that the staple food is affordable.
The Chief government spokesperson said the pending mealie meal price hike of K10 by the Millers Association of Zambia is null and void.
He wondered why the Millers wanted to take advantage of the prevailing economic crisis by unnecessarily hiking the price of mealie meal.
The Minister said government has technocrats on the ground analysing and monitoring the maize situation and will not sanction price increases of mealie meal.
Mr Kambwili said no miller has declared any losses due to load sheding and wondered why the association wants to hike the price of mealie meal.
He pointed out that government will not accept any justification for increasing the mealie meal price.
Mr Kambwili said Cabinet directed the minister of Agriculture to meet the Millers Association and communicate to them the position of government over the pending mealie meal price hike.
Meanwhile government says it will not burn the importation of maize as the country wants foreign exchange.
He said government is fully aware that the country has enough maize stocks in the country side.
Mr Kambwili said government is aware that millers don’t want to stock up maize hence the call to ban the importation of maize.
He said Millers want the FRA to hold maize stocks for them in order to force government to reduce prices of maize in the hope of increasing the price of mealie meal.
And Mr Kambwili says cabinet was yesterday briefed by the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) that the agency has so far bought more than 500,000 metric tones of maize.