Farmer organisations have vowed to take head-on the Minister of Finance, Mr. Tendai Biti after his declaration that government is not going to avail any funding to the GMB for payment of maize, arguing that the move could hamper farming preparations for this season.The outcry follows revelations by Mr. Biti that government will not fund GMB for the purchase of maize already collected by the parastatal, arguing that since the introduction of the Free On Board (FOB) import parity-related maize and wheat grain floor prices policy, GMB is expected to fund its operations as a competitor in the business.
The move has however drawn outrage from farmer organisations whose members had already delivered their crop for payment and had been looking up to government to avail the necessary money to GMB.
The farmers say if GMB has no money, it also means the 2011 to 2012 farming season preparations are compromised.
Agriculture, Mechanisation and Irrigation Development Minister, Dr Joseph Made had already indicated that government had failed farmers saying the onus lies with the Ministry of Finance to ensure that farmers get what they are owed.
If the declaration by Mr. Biti is anything to go by, it means most farmers, especially those who delivered their produce to GMB, will not be able to fund their farming operations this season.