CISANET applauds Malawi gov’t initiatives to conquer hunger

In a rare vote of confidence, the Joyce Banda administration has received kudos for its efforts in ensuring hunger-free nation and improving the agriculture sector in the country.

Civil Society in Agriculture Network (CISANET) said it was pleased with the way the Peoples Party (PP) government was handling agricultural and hunger issues which are apparently producing positive results within the short period it has been in power.

“We would like to thank government for its commitment to ending hunger in this country. Among other things that bear witness to this commitment is that…government has instituted the Presidential Initiative on Hunger and Poverty reduction,” said CISANET National Coordinator, Tamani Nkhono-Mvula.

He pointed out that the Presidential Initiative on Hunger and Poverty Reduction was doing a commendable work in uplifting the livelihoods of poor and rural Malawians as well as changing the mind-set of many smallholder farmers to take agriculture as a business. 

And as a Chairperson of SADC, the network noted with excitement that President Banda had chosen agriculture and food security to be the central theme of her tenure.

“We have also seen, under the leadership of Banda, an increased funding to the agriculture sector which has gone up to 20 percent of the national budget. This has by far surpassed the Maputo Declaration minimum of 10 percent,” applauded the CISANET boss.

According to Nkhono, CISANET applauds government for committing to the G8 Alliance that will not only increase the private sector investment in the agriculture sector but also help in providing employment to lots of unemployed youths and school leavers.

“We also believe that an increased presence of the private sector in agricultural value chain will not only provide our smallholder farmers with marketing opportunities but also access to extension, financing and improved inputs,” he observed.

The G8 New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition is an initiative aimed at increasing food security in Africa and global contributor of food in the world.

It represents a commitment by G8 nations, African governments and private sector to lift 50 million people out of hunger and poverty over the next 10 years.

Last month, CISANET also commended the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security for its all-encompassing approach in dealing with pertinent issues in the agricultural sector, saying such inclusion has afforded other actors an opportunity to formally contribute to issues of national importance.

Tamani Nkhono-Mvula observed that the civil society has been invited to participate in a number of programs that the ministry initiates including the much valued ASWAp (Agricultural Sector Wide Approach) the government is currently working on.

CISANET is a network of Malawi Civil Society Organisations working in the agriculture sector that include local and International NGOs, farmers’ organisations and some private sector organisations.

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