Dedza South parliamentary candidates have pledged to improve nutrition in under-five children – which is at 42 per cent in the district – during a debate organised by Civil Society Organization Nutrition Alliance (CSONA) on Saturday.
The debate, which centred on issues to do with improvement of malnutrition in Dedza District, was attended by Fatima Bauti (UDF), Cecelia Mandambwe (UTM), Gerald Kampanikiza (PP), Wilfred Tsangala (Independent) and Ishmael Onani (MCP).
Project Officer for CSONA, Mike Khunga commended participants who showed up for the debate, saying that was one way of showing themselves to voters.
“We thought it is sensible to engage potential parliamentary candidates in Dedza in this debate because despite the district being a food basket in Malawi, the level of malnutrition is higher than most districts,” he said.
“This is why we thought it wise for the candidates to be engaged in this debate in order for them to lay out their plans for addressing malnutrition to the voters in the district, especially in Dedza South,” he added.
Speaking in a separate interview, one of the participants, Gerald Kampanikiza stressed the importance of such debates.
He said that was one way of letting voters know the plans which the candidates have for the constituency in order for them to choose wisely during the forthcoming elections.
“As one of the aspiring candidates in Dedza, I am very alarmed with the level of malnutrition in our district and have learnt a lot from this debate, therefore, I am fired up to improve the situation once I am voted into power on May 21,” he explained.
According to the District Nutrition Office in Dedza, the rate of under-five children who are stunted in Malawi is at 37 per cent while that of Dedza is at 42 per cent.