Traditional leaders and politicians in Nsanje continue to ask for relief food as the district is likely to face food insecurity due to prolonged dry spells and fall army-worms which affected crop yields this year.
Traditional Authority (T/A) Ndamela made the plea to government through the Minister of Information and Communications Technology Nicolas Dausi, over the weekend that the district is in dire need of food support including equipment which can be used for irrigation.
Ndamela noted that most of the people did not have high crop yields due to prolonged dry spells and fall armyworms which hit the district making it more vulnerable to food security.
“I am very happy that the Minister of Information is here. I want you to take this opportunity to send a message to the state president that Nsanje District has challenges with food security this year due to dry spells and fall armyworms.
“People in the district are hard workers but effects of climate change have really failed us. We need immediate support so that we can survive,” said Traditional Authority Mbenje.
On his part, Nsanje South Member of Parliament (MP) Thom Kamangira echoed the sentiments made by the traditional leader saying things are not that rosy in the district in as far as food security is concerned.
Kamangira said the district has been facing the food shortage over the past three years which has completely affected their livelihoods.
“Most of the people in the district depend on farming, that’s to get food as well as income. However, with the current situation, as most of the people have failed to harvest, things are not easy. Therefore, we are asking the government and development partners to come and help,” said Kamangira.
The Nsanje South MP further asked government and development partners to provide modern irrigation equipment to Nsanje farmers so that they use them for irrigation farming using the water from Shire River.
“We have Shire River here in Nsanje but utilization in terms of irrigation becomes a challenge. People have been using treadle pumps for irrigation but the results are not convincing. They have been harvesting less compared to the labour provided.
“As we are in the modern world, we need to use modern irrigation facilities such as solar powered irrigation. With the district’s weather patterns, I am sure that we can do better and feed the whole nation if given such facilities.
“So, let me ask the government and development partners to consider constructing solar powered irrigation schemes so that issues of food insecurity should be addressed,” Kamangira asked.
Responding to the concerns, Minister Dausi said the issues raised by all stakeholders will be directed to the state president prof. Arthur Peter Mutharika.
According to Nsanje District Agricultural officials, over 10,000 hectares of crop fields have been lost due to the dry spell.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :