ADMARC depots to open on December 1


Following pressure from activists and the opposition, Government through Minister of Agriculture Sam Kawale has announced that Agricultural Development And Marketing Corporation (ADMARC) will start selling maize in its depots on December 1.

Kawale disclosed this on Monday in a ministerial statement on the status of ADMARC Limited which was closed in August by Kawale’s predecessor Lobin Lowe.

Lowe closed ADMARC and sent employees on paid leave on 1st September, 2022  on grounds of alleged underperformance, theft, and fraud by its officers. He said the closure would pave way for a restructuring process at the parastatal.

However, the closure of ADMARC has helped push up the price of maize with some traders selling the commodity at K30,000 per 50 kg bag.

Yesterday, Kawale announced that government will open ADMARC next month with maize being sold K300 per kg.

“Madam Speaker, on the issue of sale of Maize, procedure entails that your Ministry gets requests and demands for food maize sales from various districts to determine required quantities for draw-downs from the Strategic Grain Reserve.

“Your Ministry will request the Committee that approves requests for draw-downs of maize from the SGR. Following approval by the Committee, your Ministry will request for release of the approved quantity to be rationalised to various ADMARC Limited markets across the country for sale.

“I would like to inform you that the committee is meeting this week to process the request and send maize to all depots in  the country.

“We will open ADMARC depots on December 1, 2022 and employees will sell maize in ADMARC markets,” said Kawale in his statement.

The maize to be sold by ADMARC will be taken from government reserves as ADMARC does not have maize for sale because the company did not manage to buy maize apart due to loans it has with banks.

The company is now keeping collateral maize for banks which lent ADMARC Limited money and have not been paid back.