Reduce price of maize flour, President Kenyatta asks millers


President Uhuru Kenyatta during his address to the nation on September 14, 2018. Photo/PSCU
President Uhuru Kenyatta during his address to the nation on September 14, 2018. Photo/PSCU

In Summary

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta has said interventions in the agriculture sector including, the subsidised fertiliser programme, has had positive results and Kenyans want to see the benefits.
  • The President said the expected maize supply this year is nearly 47 million bags and, added to the 9.8 million bags in stores already, the country will have a surplus of more than 4 million bags.
  • The Commander-in-Chief further warned the NCPB against mismanaging payments for maize farmers saying the government has started paying maize farmers who were owed money.

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday asked millers to reduce the price of maize flour to reflect the surplus in production.

Speaking when he officially opened the 2018 ASK Nairobi International Trade Fair at Jamhuri Showgrounds, President Kenyatta said interventions in the agriculture sector including, the subsidised fertiliser programme, has had positive results and Kenyans want to see the benefits.

“I encourage millers to be mindful of their social responsibilities,” said the Head of State as he pointed out that the agricultural sector is enjoying massive support from the State with an allocation of Ksh.57 billion in this year’s budget alone.

The President said the expected maize supply this year is nearly 47 million bags and, added to the 9.8 million bags in stores already, the country will have a surplus of more than 4 million bags.

“In a rational environment, this should translate to significant reduction in the price of maize flour.  I, therefore, want to be clear: since supply has risen, dealers should do the right thing to their fellow Kenyans, and ease prices,” he said.

The Commander-in-Chief further warned the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) against mismanaging payments for maize farmers saying the government has started paying maize farmers who were owed money.

President Kenyatta said the delay in the payments was caused by mismanagement of budgetary allocations by the NCPB last year which saw the state corporation paying rich traders at the expense of farmers.

He also announced that the government has finalised plans to increase the production and consumption of blended maize flour with the aim of supporting nutritional intakes of food.

He said the policy is aimed at increasing the production and consumption of drought tolerant crops like sorghum, millet and cassava.

“This will create a market for farmers of these staple crops, especially in those parts of our country that receive less rainfall,” said the President.

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