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MAIZE SCAM: Jubilee Government Playing the Stockholm Syndrome Card to Loot

Kenya has been under economical turmoil recently following increased prices of essential goods after the severe drought. Inflation has been on the rise and money supply has declined making everyday life a struggle for many Kenyans.

Media houses have been abuzz after MV Pinehurst docked in Mombasa with 30,000 tonnes of maize allegedly from Mexico. The move was initiated by the government in a bid to lower maize flour prices which had hit prices over 75 shillings per kilogram.

Agriculture CS Willy Bett announced that maize flour prices would be reduced to 47 shillings per kilo following personalized deals with millers. He dismissed allegations that his visit to Mombasa was not to receive the imported maize but to check the condition of the product.

Also Read: How to Create a Maize  Monopoly in Kenya

The whole deal smells like a maize scam which Kenyans have fallen for time and again. Events preceding the docking of MV Pinehurst may reveal scanty details of the maize scandal iceberg. One week before the docking of the ship, Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) lifted the duty on imported maize.

The ship was scheduled to arrive in Kenya earlier but took a detour to South Africa before docking in Kenya. The sole reason was to delay the ship arrival until the duty-free card was in play. Apart from duty –free bonus, the maize millers made personal deals with the government hence the maize may have been bought at absurd prices.

Lowering of maize flour prices is a short term solution to a long term problem. Our National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) continue to face warehouse challenges, delayed payments and cartel infiltrations hence the country would remain with an imminent food crisis risk.

Kenyans may be suffering from the Stockholm syndrome for being oppressed since independence and have subconsciously accepted their tormentors. Stockholm syndrome is a condition that causes hostages to develop a psychological alliance with their captors as survival strategy during captivity. It is a subconscious emotional response by the hostage due to trauma caused by captivity.

The lowering of maize flour prices by the government seems like a favor rather than an obligation. The government is doing little to alleviate the anguish Kenyans are going through and it is time for every Kenyan to exercise their voting rights wisely to change the prospects of future generations.

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Posted by Timothy II Aperit

True believer in numbers. Statistics never lie. Bsc Financial Engineering MBA Finance ACCA