Mwanakatwe, Siliya disagree on banning veg and fruits imports

 

There is a growing rift between Agriculture minister Dora Siliya and Commence minister Margaret Mwanakatwe over the ban on the importation of vegetable and fruits.

The ban on the fruits and vegetables violates international agreements such as those under the World Trade Organisation and other treaties which Zambia is signed.

The ban also violatee the Consumer Competition and Protection Commission Act of Zambia which gives rights to consumers to enjoy varieties of products without due hindrances.

Without consulting anyone including the attorney general, Siliya Mubalama banned importations of vegetables and selected fruits.

But Mwanakatwe through her permanent secretary Kayula Siame has described the ban as illegal and advised traders to ignore it.

Mwanakatwe says her ministry is responsible for issues of trade and no one will just wake up and impose a ban without consultation.

Siliya has banned the importation of agricultural produce such as tomatoes, onions, pineapples, lemons, carrots, mangoes, and watermelons.

Zambia is among countries parties to the tripartite free trade area and  is a member of the SADC and COMESA.

This raises serious questions on whether the PF cabinet meeting is held to discuss serious issues such as this one or a mere gathering to enjoy tea and   Talk nonsense.

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