Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe has conceded the hunger situation in the country was exaggerated, leading to chaotic procedures in the procurement of maize.
“The hunger situation was a bit exaggerated by the vulnerability assessment committee,” said Gondwe.
He said when he wound up debate on mid year budget review statement in parliament .
The assessment found that there would be food deficit of 800000 metric tonnes that would affect 6.7 million Malawians.
This led to the government haphazardly buying maize from Zambia in the process flouting procurement procedures.
Gondwe also defended his statement that the economy might be heading for a rebound.
“This is the first time that such a fall has been noted,” he said in reference to the inflation drop from 24% to 18%.
He also said there has been huge revenue collection.
“This can only be done if the economy was doing well,” he said.
Parliament rises on Thursday after meeting for four weeks.
Meanwhile, Malawi News Agency report that there are fears that people in the lower shire may again face starvation this year following a dry spell that has hit some parts of Nsanje and Chikwawa Districts.
The development comes contrary to predictions by weather experts that most parts of the country would experience heavy rains this rainy season due to Lanina weather patern.
In an interview Ward Councilor for Nsanje’s Kalulu Rose Makiyi said she is observing a repetition of events similar to last year and the situation does not look promising.
Makiyi said all the crops have withered in the area as a result of sporadic rainfall and she feared people in the area will face starvation as they will not harvest anything.
“Let me put things straight here that Nsanje District has received less rainfall as was the case last year. If one goes around in the fields, he or she can note that the rains have done no good to us this year. Even crops that are drought tolerant such as sorghum, millet have dried up,” Councilor Makiyi explained.
According to the concerned ward councilor, those affected will need relief food for survival.
“This dry spells comes fresh from another tragedy as stalk borers and army worms also attacked our crop fields. Therefore, people in the district will need relief food items,” she said.
District Agricultural Development Officer for Nsanje Patrick Msiyambiris admitted that the dry spells will have a negative impact on food security.
He explained that his office is in the process of collecting information on how the impact of the dry spells.
“We have experienced dry spell in the past three weeks and most of the crops have dried up. The district and some parts of the lower shire has also been hit by false army worms which have destroyed crops and this will also have a negative impact on the growth of the crops,” said Msiyambiri.
In Chikwawa, Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) recently called on government and development partners to continue the distribution relief food items following the scarcity of rains resulting into dry spells in some areas of the district.
Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :