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We delivered on our inputs contracts: FSG

By Daniel Chigundu

Fertilisers Seed Grain (FSG) says it has never failed to deliver on fertiliser contracts that it got from the government programs adding that they even have signed delivery documents to prove it.

There are allegations that some companies contracted to supply seed and fertiliser under the Presidential Input Scheme and the Command Agriculture Scheme have been failing to honour their contracts despite being paid.

The allegations emanate from the failure by the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands to account for close to US$3 billion which was allegedly released to them by treasury under the Command Agriculture funding scheme.

However, in an interview during a plant tour by the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Land, Agriculture, Water, Climate and Rural Resettlement FSG managing director Steve Morland said the fact that they continue to get contracts is evident that they are a trusted supplier.

“Whatever contract we get we produce and supply 100 percent we have a record of that and that is why we are used a supplier and you can see around there is a lot of raw materials there is a lot of production going on.

“We have our daily records everything is here the trucks when they come they go through a weighbridge and also when they are going out.

“When we finish a contract we do our reconciliation together with the receiving parties GMB, COTTCO or whoever they may be and we get everything signed off and we also get the documentation at the end of the contract,” he said.

According to Morland, the company has been contracted to supply about 63 000 tonnes of compound D and 63 000 tonnes of Ammonium Nitrate this season and their production is currently at 600 tonnes per day adding that they hope to ramp it to about 900 tonnes.

The company’s biggest challenge has been accessing foreign currency to buy raw materials which are bonded in warehouses at the company’s manufacturing plant and are only released upon payment of the scarce currency which comes in the form of 180-day letters of credit from commercial banks.

FSG requires about US$10million per month to effectively produce on its contract usually between August and February which are the agricultural peak periods

“A lot of raw materials here are under collateral management or under bank finance and as we get the forex we then get it released so the benefit is that we have it here on sight and we can immediately start to put it into production but definitely forex is a problem,” he said.

Meanwhile, FSG managing director has reiterated that his company has no relationship with any funeral company adding that the Ministry of Finance officials were mixing them up with another company.

“They mixed us up with a company that deals in funerals I think the company is called Funeral Services Group or something and they are part of ZIMNAT and they have got nothing to do with us and as you can see very clearly this is a fertiliser company,” he said.

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Daniel Chigundu

Daniel Chigundu is a male journalist in Zimbabwe and has been practising since September 2009. He used to the editor for The Business Connect (newspaper) in Harare, has his own news website Tourism Focus which is biased towards the tourism sector. Daniel is also working with Magamba Network on their project called Open Parliament where they do live coverage of Parliamentary activities on Twitter and Facebook. He is currently the secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Parliamentary Journalists Forum, is a member of Zimbabwe Small Broadcasters Association and a board member of Digital Communication Network. He holds a Diploma in Communication and Journalism from the Christian College of Southern Africa (CCOSA), a certificate in Youth leadership training from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), a certificate in Citizen Journalism from Magamba Network and is currently a first-year student at Zimbabwe Open University studying for a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Ethics and Organisational Leadership.

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