27 April 2014

Zambia: State Offloads More Relief Maize to Pemba

GOVERNMENT through the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) has released a second allocation of 2,500 X 50 kilogramme bags of relief maize to be delivered to hunger hit households in Pemba District, Southern Province.

District Commissioner (DC) Reginald Mugoba said 80 per cent of the maize was food for work programme under which residents would work on community projects to receive the maize.

In an interview yesterday, Mr Mugoba said the remaining 20 per cent of the food would be distributed to vulnerable households particularly those headed by elderly persons.

He said DMMU engaged a local non-governmental organisation called Afrad to distribute the maize to starving villagers in Chompa, Demu, Bulanda and Kasiya areas in Chief Hamaundu, Siamuleya and Kakuba areas in Chief Moya.

"We are happy DMMU has approved and released a second consignment of relief maize to our district as per request made because many residents are starving need food," he said.

Mr Mugoba said about 250 elderly persons in various areas in the district would benefit the distribution of relief food from Government.

The DC said Government would continue supplying relief food to hunger hit areas to enable the locals participate fully in developing the country.

He cautioned farmers against selling off their maize stocks to unscrupulous buyers who would exploit them by buying the commodity cheaply.

Mr Mugoba said farmers should wait for recommended maize floor price from the Food Reserve Agency in the forthcoming crop marketing season.

"When I officiated at a recent local field day, I was disappointed that some of our local farmers here are already selling their maize to unscrupulous buyers," he said.

He said selling maize cheaply to unscrupulous buyers was not beneficial because farmers incurred huge losses at the expense of enriching the traders.

Mr Mugoba urged residents to desist from selling all their maize saying it was from such background that hunger crisis was escalating.

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