Corrupt GMB Officials Blocking Grain Loan Programme: Minister Moyo
Speaking to Radio VOP in Bulawayo on Saturday, Moyo who also an MDC-T member admitted that GMB has been rocked by corruption and that has been derailing the distribution of maize grain to areas face deficits this year.
“There have been some reports of some corrupt officials with the GMB diverting maize grain meant for people facing starvation. We are investigating it as the Ministry. But what I want to say to those people failing to access grain from GMB under the grain loan scheme is that, they should report this to their local councillors , Members of Parliament or members of the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee (JOMIC) who will help them,” said Moyo
Moyo added: “We want everybody who failed to get a good harvest this year to receive maize grain under this government programme. The maize should not also be distributed according to political party lines.”
Last month the government announced that it has extended the grain loan scheme to March next year to cushion villagers whose crops were wiped off by a dry spell during this cropping season. Under the scheme, all several households facing food deficits will get maize from state owned GMB. Provinces that are facing food shortages include parts of Manicaland, Masvingo, Matabeleland South and North and some parts of Midlands.
According to the final crop assessment by the government, this past farming season 1 600 000hectares of the maize crop was planted but because of lack of rain, 500 000hectares is a write off.
This leaves the country with only 1 100 000 million hectares of the planted maize crop against the national grain requirement stands at two million tonnes of maize per annum.
The World Food Program (WFP) indicated that more than one million Zimbabweans are said to be in need of food aid between now and March 2012 following the continuous dry spell that has been affecting the national produce.