GOVERNMENT has deployed Zambia National Service (ZNS) personnel at milling plants that have received maize from the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) to monitor production and where they are selling to counter illegal export of the commodity, says Minister of Defence Richwell Siamunene.
He said in an interview yesterday said that the presence of ZNS officers at some milling companies was not a strange occurrence but a security measure that Government had taken to ensure that mealie meal was not illegally exported but reached the intended selling points of the local people.
He said that Government was monitoring the quantity of mealie meal production and the points of sale to counter any export or diversion of the commodity.
“We are monitoring milling companies that Government has supplied maize to through the Food Reserve Agency at the point of production to the point of sale to ensure that no commodity is exported but that it reaches the intended selling points. This is a monitoring and security mechanism,” Mr Siamunene said.
He said the security mechanism was aimed at ensuring that the quantity of production and mealie meal being supplied at selling points tallied and exportation or diversion of the commodity by any unscrupulous persons was eliminated.
The minister said Government would continue to monitor the milling companies that it had supplied maize to ensure there was enough food for the local people.
A check at Chat and Swift milling plants in Lusaka’s Heavy Industrial Area found presence of ZNS officers.
Chat Milling human resources and administration manager Geoffrey Njovu referred all queries to the ZNS public relations office.
”I am not in a position to give out any information; it is better you talk to the ZNS public relations officer; he will be able to give you information, because this is not our programme but it’s for ZNS,” he said.