Malawi’s president Joyce Banda has ordered People’s Party (PP) cohorts to shoulder the responsibility of food distribution to some food insecure households in Malawi.
President Banda rolled out the food distribution exercise Thursday afternoon in Sub-Traditional Authority Chanthunya’s area in Balaka district where she distributed 50 kg bags of maize to food insecure families.
She urged PP followers not to politicize the exercise, saying the relief items are for all Malawians regardless of their political affiliation.
“Government alone can not reach out to all families. We need to support the government, and as a party we can assist and help these families.
“Not body should just sit down and watch people starving. I am expecting PP leaders to take charge of the distributing exercise so that we should reach out to people on the ground,” said Banda, who made a brief speech.
Apparently, president Banda sourced the maize as a response to the Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee Report which indicates that households in districts Nsanje, Chikwawa, Mwanza, Neno, Blantyre, Balaka, Phalombe, Ntcheu, Zomba and Chiradzulu are food insecure.
Besides that, the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWSNET) food security outlook for May 2012 through May, 2013 depicts possible food insecurity in some districts in the southern region owing to inadequate production as a result of dry spells experienced in the districts.
The report further indicates that poor households will face great difficulty in meeting essential food needs and will not be able to afford key non-food expenditures needed to maintain livelihoods.
“Most severe food insecurity is expected during January-March period which is the typical peak period of lean season in Malawi. It is recommended, therefore, that government starts response planning immediately despite the time being early in the consumption year and existent uncertainty with regards to retail maize prices,” reads the report in part.
In August, government in conjunction with the World Food Program started distributing food items to families in the districts in question.
In Nsanje and Chikhwawa districts, President Banda has entrusted Minister of Transport Mohammed Sidik Mia and Parliamentarian Sam Ganda while Irrigation and Water Development Minister Richie Muheya is in-charge of the maize distribution exercise in Mulanje district. Other districts to benefit are Machinga, Zomba, Mangochi and Chiradzulu.