United Party for National Development, Solwezi East Member of Parliament, Leaky Kintu says the downward adjustment of the maize floor price from K85 to K60 has had a toll on farmers in his constituency.
And Kintu has revealed that he has reliable information that briefcase businessmen were given money by the PF to exploit farmers.
Speaking in an interview, Kintu said very few farmers are likely to grow maize this farming season because Food Reserve Agency(FRA) has pegged the floor price cheapily
He said Solwezi East is basically a farming block,where most people depend on growing maize and other agricultural products.
“The way this government is running agriculture is affecting our people. Talking about maize, the floor price was K85 now it has been reduced to K60. Now if you look at how much farmers spent on farming imputs, (basal dressing and top dressing fertilizer), it is a mockery to them. Now as things are now, most farmers may not plant maize this farming season. This will result in the shortage of maize,” Kintu said.
He appealed to government to adjust the maize floor prices upwards to encourage farmers to grow more maize.
Asked whether it is not too late to do that, Kintu said:” Yes it maybe too late because most farmers who sold maize to briefcase farmers will have lost out. We are reliably informed that those briefcase businesspeople were given money by the PF to exploit farmers. However, there are many farmers who have not yet sold their maize.”