Cheap maize not reaching poor, says Consumer Federation of Kenya

Consumer Federation of Kenya (Cofek) Secretary General Stephen Mutoro Photo by WILLIS AWANDU

Consumer Federation of Kenya has asked the Government to do away with the subsidised maize flour since it does not benefit the targeted millions of poor Kenyans.

In a press statement, secretary general Stephen Mutoro said the move by the National Treasury to release money for importation of more subsidised maize was suspect.

“The Government has just confirmed our fears that they are only interested at using public money to enrich a few individuals,” said Dr Mutoro.

He said the move to import more maize was unsustainable and an expensive experiment that was doomed to fail.

Mutoro argued that the subsidy was benefitting cartels who were on a mission to raise campaign money.

“Supermarkets are reluctant to sell the subsidised maize flour as it takes more shelf space and yet it offers them comparatively low margins. Some unscrupulous business people are also re-packaging the subsidised flour to rake in over Sh30 for the 2 kg packet. This is perhaps one of the major threats to the programme,” he said

Mutoro added the crisis had been complicated by the fact that the Government had not been keen to track the disbursement of the maize flour.

He also took a stab at Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett for setting up a task force to advise him. 

 

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