ARUSHA Regional Commissioner Mr Mrisho Gambo has advised the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries to stop issuing permits for maize exports.
Mr Gambo issued the advice yesterday shortly after visiting three Arusha Zonal National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) storehouses.
He said that although the regional authority had already banned maize exports, they were, however, surprised to learn that there were some traders with valid export permits still engaging in the business.
The regional leaders noted that it was becoming trickier to control maize export, which was done purposely to protect local industries as the ministry continued issuing permits.
“We are getting confused. We are banning the export while some traders are found exporting the maize to the neighbouring Kenya---possessing permits from the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries,” he noted, asking the ministry to consider stopping permits’ issuance.
He said to protect some local industries using maize as raw material, it was vital for authorities to intensify war against maize export. The RC noted that the regional authority has been able to control all illegal routes that were previously being used by unscrupulous traders to export the cereal crop to the neighbouring Kenya.
“The permits issued by the ministry for maize exportation confuse us…we are asking the ministry to stop that for the sake of national interest, this will also help us protect local industries,” he said.
On his part, Arusha NFRA Zonal Manager Mr Abdillah Nyangasa said while briefing the RC said the agency managed to purchase 5,111 tonnes of maize between August and November last year.
The agency, according to the NFRA zonal boss, had planned to by about 15,000 tonnes.