The much anticipated for tobacco marketing season has been officially launched with TBZ, Tobacco Board of Zambia chosen to run the floors.
Addressing various stakeholders yesterday, Agricultural Minister Wylbur Simuusa says that the decision to allow TBZ to run the floors this season was arrived at because it was clear that this is what the farmers wanted.
Mr. Simuusa however, took a swipe at the regulatory authority for not adequately addressing the needs of the farming community in the province.
He has instructed the board to immediately begin engaging all stakeholders so that by December this year, a local association is formed which will run the floors next year.
And the Minister announced that farmers have been allowed to sell their produce from wherever they want to, for as long as they are duly registered.
He directed all merchants to ensure that they pay farmers within 24 hours of buying the produce.
Meanwhile Eastern Tobacco Grower’s Association yesterday heeded to the Ministerial directive to withdraw the court case against EFAZ, Eastern Fodya Association of Zambia.
In an interview with Breeze News, the Director, Michael Daka expressed happiness with the ministerial decision to allow TBZ to run the floors this year.
And the farmers made a mockery funeral of EFAZ with a coffin following the decision by the minister to choose TBZ to run the floors instead of EFAZ.