Over one thousand five hundred metric tons of Maize has been bought from farmers in Eastern Province.
Eastern Province Permanent Secretary, Chanda Kasolo told a media Briefing this morning that the volume of maize bought by FRA, the Food Reserve Agency is expected to rise to 20 thousand metric tons next week.
FRA is expected to buy 160 thousand metric tons of maize from farmers in the province this year.
Mr. Kasolo acknowledged that the province is behind in terms of maize purchase and attributed the slow pace at which maize is being bought from farmers to demand from neighbouring countries caused by poor rainfall pattern.
The Permanent Secretary however, says FRA will manage to reach the target of maize to be bought from farmers in the province despite briefcase buyers invading the market.
And Mr. Kasolo explained that efforts by government to curb maize smuggling has come with challenges due to the porousness of the borders, which has made it impossible for security personnel to stop the trend.
He appealed to people in the province to report any suspected maize smuggler to the nearest police station so that the maize remains in the country for the sake of food security.