Government yesterday flagged off the exportation 20 trucks-loads of Mukula which were intercepted by PF cadres last week.

Speaking during the ceremony at ZNS Kafue Camp where government invited media coverage, Defence Permanent Secretary Sturdy Mwale said the trucks had been allowed to proceed “to their original destination after a successful verification process”.

“This morning we are now flagging off 20 trucks that have been in our custody for the past four-five days. So the issue is that the verification exercise has been concluded and these are the trucks which are now allowed to cross. They can proceed and in turn make some government revenue. We appreciate your concern and we stand ready to explain to you exactly the government’s position and to see to it that its not a Mwale Sturdy and its not any government official on individual who is actually involved in this issue,” said Mwale.

“Government has put up a clear position of allowing ZAFFICO to conduct this business, to sell all the illegal, confiscated logs of mukula, on behalf of government. There is one truck that is still under our custody despite it being cleared but because it was involved in an accident. If they will manage to change the container into a new one, it will equally be going.”

Speaking at the same event, ZAFFICO chief executive officer Frighton Sichone regretted government’s failure to announce the exportation of illegally harvested Mukula.

“One of the weaknesses we have identified is that we may not have publicly announced that we are exporting illegally harvested and confiscated logs, which we are going to do. I should take this opportunity to state that ZAFFICO is not cutting the logs, we are also bound by the ban,” said Sichone.