CHIVI – Farmers in Chivi district, who have been encouraged to grow small grains in order to counter the little rainfall they receive annually, are regretting the move after the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) has failed to pay for the sorghum they sold in 2014.
Presenting their grievances to Chivi Central legislator Ephraim Gwanongodza, farmers fronted by Tawanda Mapurisa who is also Zanu PF ward 17 vice chairperson, said the GMB has completely neglected them and they had since lost hope of getting paid for their 2014 produce.
"We sold maize and sorghum to GMB in 2014 and they gave us money for maize only. Since then we have been demanding money for our sorghum but to no avail. Things are tough and if we could get the payment it would help us a lot. Schools have opened and we need to pay our children's fees," said Mapurisa.
"It would have been better if someone talked to us about our money than to be ignored completely like nothing happened. Right now there is ravaging hunger and we would be happy if GMB give us maize equivalent to our money," he added.
GMB Chivi manager Kudakwashe Masiyambiri said they are working hard to clear all the money they owe Chivi farmers.
"We may be moving at a tortoise pace but we will eventually pay off all the farmers. The list was big but now we have less than 10 people. The farmers have given us an option to either give them maize equivalent to the money we owe them or pay them in full but the former was shot down by the head office saying it has never been done before. The head office is running around sourcing funds and once the money is available we will clear the debt," said Masiyambiri.
Gwanongodza promised to push on behalf of the farmers so that they receive their money.news