Illovo Sugar Malawi has engaged the Ministry of Homeland Security on reports of theft especially at its estates in Nchalo, Chikwawa district which the company says is costing it millions of Kwacha and affected operations.
Statistics given at the meeting show that during the first six months of 2020, the firm lost K36 million on irrigation equipment to theft, and 1, 361 tripods, 965 extensions, 792 sprinkles, 174 hosepipes and 124 siphons.
The statistics further indicate that out of the total stolen items during the first half of this year, 2,431 tonnes of cane was recovered which if not recovered would have made the company loose K72 million.
Speaking during the meeting, Illovo Sugar Human Resources Director, Khumbo Banda, said this year has seen the highest increase of theft cases.
“The security issue has been always there but this year it has highly increased because in the past people would steal cane for consumption but now it has moved to stealing cane for selling,” Banda said.
The company then asked the ministry to come in with expertise and personnel in helping curb the problem.
Ministry of Homeland Security, Richard Chimwendo Banda, assured the company officials to help out in addressing the concerns.
“We have come up with processes that are going to ensure that the problem has been dealt with which include establishing and strengthening community policing, increase patrols and increase roadblocks,” Chimwendo Banda said.
Apart from theft, the company has also expressed worry over malicious fires which it says destroys immature cane especially in Dwangwa
Justin Mkweu is a fast growing reporter who currently works with Times Group on the business desk.
He is however flexible as he also writes about current affairs and national issues.