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Roller meal taskforce set up

by Staff reporter
24 Jan 2020 at 01:01hrs | Views
The availability of subsidised maize-meal is expected to improve following the establishment of a taskforce to ensure transparent and equitable distribution of the product.

The taskforce will make follow-ups with retailers to curb diversion of the maize-meal to the black market. This comes amid observations that even refined maize-meal was no longer readily available.

There is panic-buying, while connected individuals buy as many bags as they can and divert them to the black market each time deliveries are made.

At the black market, subsidised roller meal is selling for almost twice the gazetted $5o for a 10kg packet. Industry and Commerce Minister Dr Sekai Nzenza told a Press conference yesterday that the maize-meal taskforce was headed by her deputy, Raji Modi.

 The subsidy for roller meal is paid directly to millers on proof that they have milled and delivered the meal. This means millers can get their maize from any source — GMB, private or import, as they buy it at market rates.

The switch from a GMB subsidy to a millers' subsidy enabled millers to import their own 50 000 tonnes of maize from South Africa, whose first batch arrived in Bulawayo and awaits transportation to Harare.

Citizens have been calling on the Government to put in place strict measures to ensure all millers who get grain under the subsidy programme sell maize-meal at subsidised prices.

Dr Nzenza insisted that roller meal was available in many shops, but a survey carried out by The Herald in Harare yesterday showed otherwise.

She said the Government was working with key stakeholders like the Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers (CZR) and GMB on the issue.

"During the course of the holidays, there were some challenges as some companies were closed, resulting in the maize-meal shortage, which is still being experienced in some parts of the country," said Dr Nzenza.

"To address the areas experiencing critical shortages and to ensure that maize-meal is available.


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Source - the herald

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