Zambezi residents prefer cheaper smuggled maize meal

Zambezi residents prefer cheaper smuggled maize meal
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Namibia's drought has been blamed for the increase of smuggled maize meal in the Zambezi Region, with residents opting to buy the illegal products as they are cheaper than those produced locally.
The Deputy Director in the Finance Ministry's Customs and Excise Division for the North-eastern region, Wilbroad Poniso, told Nampa there is a worrying increase of contraband maize meal entering Namibia.
Poniso identified non-designated places near Katima Mulilo and as far as Schukmannsburg in the Kabbe North Constituency as entry points for the contraband.
He said the recent interception of smuggled maize meal, branded as - Breakfast from Zambia -, revealed that many locals affected by the drought prefer buying the illegal product.
The Finance Ministry official explained that a 25-kilogramme bag of maize meal in Zambia cost about 80 000 Zambian Kwacha, or 37 Namibia dollars.
But when smuggled into Namibia, one bag sells for 200 dollars, which is still cheaper than the 250 dollars for locally-produced maize in shops.
Street vendors said those willing to buy the maize meal, usually approach them and place orders, after which they contact their suppliers in Zambia to deliver on a certain date.