LATE: Scribes abandon Mwanakatwe’s briefing

Commerce minister Margaret Mwanakatwe: File Picture

JOURNALISTS have boycotted Minister of Commerce Margaret Mwanakatwe’s press briefing saying they are tired of her late coming.

The briefing was supposed to begin at 11:30 hours but by 13:00 hours, Mwanakatwe was not in the vicinity, forcing journalists to leave.

“This is not the first time this is happening. Most times when we come to this ministry we have to wait for hours before being addressed and this really puts us back on deadlines. I hope that this mini protest will finally get our grievances to her. There’s got to be change,” said one of the journalists.

However, a few community radio stations and ZANIS waited for Mwanakatwe’s briefing which only began around 14:00 hours.

According to ZANIS, Mwanakatwe announced that government had banned the importation of refined, packed and bottled edible oils in a bid to protect the Zambian industry.

ZANIS reported that Mwanakatwe said the move would be monitored by various government agencies because it was in line with government’s strategy of diversification and industrialization.

“The edible oil industry has been identified as one of the key sub sectors of the manufacturing industry with potential to make the country self-sufficient in the production of cooking oil and other by-products,” said Mwanakatwe who also said the sale of live birds on wholesale and retail basis would be reserved for citizens and local companies after the publication of the Reservation Scheme Statutory Instrument which was currently being printed.

         

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