Malawi President Banda says cassava production to enhance economic development

President Joyce Banda on Monday said increased cassava production in the country would enhance socio-economic development of the country.

Banda was speaking during national cassava commercialization launch which was held in the area of traditional authority Njewa in Lilongwe.

The visiting Nigerian President Dr Goodluck Jonathan also was at the launch as a special guest of Banda.

Banda said many Malawians should embark on growing the crop at a large scale to improve country’s production.

“I urge all Malawians to grow cassava because it’s a miracle crop. Those who grow it realize more money and food for their respective families,” Banda said.

She also explained that time has come for Malawi to scale up cassava production to be used for manufacturing confectionaries such as bread; saying once taken seriously it might become a beacon of hope for communities to enhance prosperity.

President Banda also assured cassava farmers to be given full government support as a way of combating poverty and hunger among the communities.

“I would like to ask cassava farmers to scale up cassava production as this will give you a beacon for prosperity.

“Government will fully support all cassava farmers in order to ensure that problems of poverty and hunger are resolved once and for all in our communities,” she explained.

In his remarks, the Nigeria President assured Malawi government for his continued support towards achieving national cassava commercialization programme, saying he was impressed with the initiative.

“I want to assure you the support from my government to ensure that you have realized objectives which you want to achieve through this programme launched today. When I’m in Nigeria the only bread I eat is the one with cassava,” Jonathan said.

Jonathan also emphasized on the need to grow cassava, saying the crop is able to do better even during disasters such as drought.

He said the crop is one food that would reduce poverty and increase food security among Malawians.

“The crop can also do better even if there are disasters such as drought. As such, cassava is one food that will reduce poverty and increase food security among Malawians,” he said.

The Nigerian President is in the country on a two day state visit.  Among the issues discussing with Joyce Banda include bilateral relations. He is the first Nigerian President to visit Malawi after 48 years of self-rule.

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan walks side by side with President Joyce Banda as he arrives at KIA Monday morning. Photo by Sam Makak-Mana

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