Written by on April 5, 2019

RESIDENTS of Sikoongo chiefdom have complained that the high price of mealie meal in the area which they said had almost thrown some people into starvation.

A concerned resident of Sikoongo Ward, Geoffrey Mweetwa, said the new K120 price of a 25kg bag of mealie meal was inhibitive to most families especially those without any reliable source of income.

He said mealie meal prices would most likely subject some families to abject poverty if they are not controlled by government.

Meanwhile, Chief Sikoongo’s spokesperson Jethro Mandeva has confirmed the increase in mealie meal prices in the area which he said had made it difficult for some poor families to afford the commodity.

He said that, “Only the civil servants will manage to buy the mealie meal.”

Mr Mandeva appealed to the District Commissioner’s office to get involved to try and stabilize the price of mealie meal.

“The DC’s office should try and lobby for more relief maize to be released from Food Reserve Agency to sell at cheaper prices which is affordable by most poor people in the area,” he said.

Meanwhile, some businessmen have taken advantage of the food scarcity in Chief Sikoongo’s area and have invaded the place to exchange mealie meal with goats.

Sikoongo ward councillor, Progress Mangaba, told the Sun in an interview that

some businessmen were reportedly exchanging a goat with two 25kg bags of mealie meal while the other more desperate ones were giving a goat for one 25kg bag of mealie meal.

Mr Mangaba says the situation is very bad and he is very worried that people will be left with no livestock.

In another development, Lusitu Ward councillor, Fund Mutinta Chipembere, has expressed worry about the lack of water for people and livestock in the area due to the dried Lusitu River.

Mr. Chipembere has appealed to the government to come on board and help the people by providing them with clean drinking water.

He said he feared some people and livestock would dies of dehydration because there was no other reliable source of water in the area.

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