Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama) has asked the Agriculture Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc) to employ serious security measures in all its depots following the official announcement by the grain trader that it has opened its market to start selling maize to the public.
Admarc will be selling the maize in its depots at K160 per kilogram and each person will be allowed to buy a maximum quantity of 30 kilograms.
Cama Executive Director, John Kapito, said the opening of the market is a welcome development, however, it is worrisome that previous marketing seasons have always been marred by corruption, a development which denies less privileged Malawians to access the commodity.
Kapito said: “The opening of the market is a welcome development which we expected because it is going to help consumers to access the grain without walking long distances and in addition it will also facilitate in bringing down the price of maize as there will be excess supply leading to competition in pricing.”
Kapito also welcomed the move by the grain trader to allow each person to purchase a maximum of 30 kilograms but cautioned against abuse of the system.
“What we have noted in the past is that when Admarc come up with such determinations people have always end up abusing the system where vendors dubiously buy more maize from the depots and thereafter resale the same grain to the vulnerable Malawians at a higher price,” he said.
He further bemoaned what he termed as “weak and porous regulations” in most government institutions, including Admarc, saying they are fueling corruption which leaves poor Malawians vulnerable.
Admarc has put the price at K160 per kilogram as opposed to K250 which the cooperation paid to the farmers when purchasing the same quantity.