Unga shortage is because Kenyans consume more Ugali, says Agriculture CS

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Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett addresses the press at the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) Donholm silo, Nairobi, June 19, 2017. [Photo: @ntvkenya]

The government blamed the biting maize and Unga shortage, on Kenyans, for eating too much Ugali.

According to Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Willy Bett, Kenyans have been consuming too much Ugali since prices maize flour were subsidised, hence the acute shortage of the substance in shops.

He however affirmed that the government had made quick efforts to diversify transportation of imported white maize to mitigate the situation, even as elections near.

Speaking as he witnessed the arrival of 12,000 bags through the Rift Valley Railways (RVR), Monday, Bett indicated all the maize arriving at the Port of Mombasa, would be transported through cargo trucks, the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), RVR to reach Kenyans faster.

“Since we started the government subsidised Unga programme, we have witnessed more Kenyans preferring the product for Ugali. This has led to a high demand for maize flour,” Bett noted, at the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) Donholm silo, Nairobi.

A total of 1.2 million bags of imported white maize have been distributed since May when the government launched the Sh6 billion subsidy programme.

The Ministry affirmed that the remaining 3.8 million bags will be imported by end of July.

“Before the end of this month, three ships carrying 114,000 tonnes will be received at the port,” said the CS.

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