Cheap maize is not available anywhere- DP Gachagua explains why Unga prices will not drop anytime soon.
Speaking during a joint-media interview at Karen, Nairobi, the second in command, highlighted that there was tight competition from East and West African countries in an attempt to purchase maize from South Africa.
He added that the government had opted to import maize from brazil, but importation is costly due to the distance.
He stated,”Cheap maize is not available anywhere in the world. The only available maize is from South Africa. We are in competition with Angola and Rwanda for the same maize. The maize in Brazil is too expensive to import because of the distance.”
On the same topic, DP Rigathi noted that the government does not also want to do direct importation of maize because of the maize scandals and graft.
He stated,”The Government does not want to import maize directly because we don’t want corruption and scandals. We don’t want people in Government to get into business.”
“We advertised for millers and other people to apply, to get permits to import duty-free maize to bring down the cost of maize flour. Unfortunately, there is no maize almost everywhere in the world,” he added.
He however, highlighted Kenya kwanza’s efforts to reduce to cost of flour despite the hard conditions.
He stated,”When we came in, the cost of unga was between Ksh230- Ksh250, at that time there was a subsidy. We have worked very hard and now unga is between Ksh170-Ksh191.”
“We decided as a government that subsidising consumption is foolish because it is not sustainable,” he added.