PARLIAMENT heard yesterday that Government did not ban the export of maize to its neighboring countries.
Agriculture Minister Given Lubinda told Parliament that at the beginning of this month his permanent secretary announced a suspension of the issuance of export permits to allow for carrying out an audit of maize that was held especially by the private sector to avoid a situation where FRA maize was also exported dubiously.
Mr Lubinda said when he previously announced the release of maize by FRA he had indicated that the private sector was holding onto more than 200, 000 tons of maize and that maize would be allowed for export from the Ministry of Agriculture.
“There was no ban that was made. In accordance with the Food Reserve Act, a ban on exports of any food item would have to be by way of issuing a statutory instrument,”
He said that after the stocks were verified, government announced that the issuance of export permits had again commenced.
Meanwhile, Mr Lubinda told the House there was a leader of some opposition political party that misled the world when he lied that government had sold all its maize to its neighbouring countries.
Mr Lubinda told Parliament he was shocked to see a leader of the opposition political party featuring on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) news misleading the world that Zambia had exported all its maize at $200 per metric ton.
He said lies should never be a mark for leadership quality by misleading the world through international media.
“Mr Speaker, we ought to aspire for the leadership of the country on the basis of the truth,” Mr Lubinda said.
He said the statement issued to BBC by the opposition leader was misleading and alarming in nature.
Mr Lubinda said people who were bent on telling lies should never be voted into office.