It’s very sad and disheartening seeing citizens queuing in long queues for hours just to buy a bag of mealie meal.
By Gift Musukwa Vinkumbo Former PF Deputy Mayor Chililabombwe.
The problem faced today is not Small but bigger than the attention its getting . The minister of agriculture has been advised at several platforms in parliament and other political players to halt exportation of maize and mealie meal in order to safe guard food for the country in recent past months . Today’s situation is as a result of having leadership that does not heed to advice , unfocused and uncaring for the welfare of its people.
Let me zone in on the situation currently on copperbelt where a bag of mealie meal has become a national trophy, and getting one bag today is quiet a great achievement owing to its high price fetching at a minimum amount k250 , another factor being circumstances in which people are going through to get the said commodity, lining up in very long queues with full of intimidation from authorities .
A hungry man is an Angry man, if this situation is not arrested in quickest possible time, things might turn sour . Citizens are agitated and angry over the whole episode .
Generally, the condition on the Copperbelt is so bad. One of the reasons why we are in this shortage commodity is smuggling being done by govt officials , aligned ruling party businessnesmen and party cadres especially on the copperbelt and Chililabombwe in particular, the other rampant smuggling group is the unemployed youths , men and women. Some people in chililabombwe have suggested that govt opens up COMESA and flood it with mealie meal to cut off the price from escalating further in the border lines at kasumbalesa, what you don’t understand is that DRC appetite for the commodity right now can swallow the whole lot of supply at a shortest period .
The impact of unemployment is now felt as many youths lost jobs in lubambe last year and equally other contracting companies at the mining firm, the KCM and mopani unresolved issues which have resulted in many people being out of employment and stalemate in employment by the two firms has massively contributed to the economic woes on the copperbelt.Let the President and his Mines Minister come and this time announce the solutions to KCM and Mopani.The failure by government to acknowledge that the rampant smuggling on the Copperbelt is mainly due to their inability to sort out Mopani and KCM is the biggest indication that they don’t have the capacity to solve this problem.
We can’t be on lip service for 2 years with no practical solutions , with the good rainfall we had this season ; would have been better if governments fertilizer and inputs were fairly and well distributed.
Looking forward to seeing the situation normalised .