The Agriculture Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc) officials say some communities in central region are preventing officials from the state run produce company from moving excess maize to food shortage hit districts in the southern region.
Admarc acting chief executive officer Felix Jumbe said this on Wednesday when members of the Agriculture and Natural Resources committee of parliament visited some Admarc depots in Ntchisi.
“Some districts in central region have surplus maize but communities are preventing our officials from taking them for sale in the south.
” They block trucks, in some cases even burn the trucks. This maize will instead go bad,” said Jumbe.
He said the 4000 metric tonnes of extra maize are in Ntchisi, Kasungu, Dowa, Lilongwe and Mchinji.
“This poses a great risk as the maize will go bad,” he said.
The committee’s chairperson Sameer Suleman described the situation as shocking but faulted Admarc for not alerting his committee on the issue earlier, saying the matter required the committee’s attention at an early stage.
“You should have alerted us when the problems had just started. We need to work together and the media to sensitise the defiant communities on the need to serve lives through smooth maize redistribution,” Suleman said.
There have been violent scenes in Lilongwe and Mchinji as communities blocked lorries and trucks packed with maize bags from leaving Admarc depots.
Jumbe also told the parliamentary committee members that Admarc needs K150 billion to improve its operations and infrastructure.