Malawi Government Wednesday officially signed the US$ 80 million (about MK 36 billion) loan for the Malawi Floods Emergency Recovery Project following the floods and dry spell that have befallen the country this year.
In his appreciative speech, Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Dr Goodall Gondwe described the project as critical and timely considering that it is in the best interest of the thousands that were displaced, some of whom died following the floods.
He said; “As a result of the floods, schools, health centres, roads and many other public facilities were either damaged or washed away.
“This project is, therefore, timely as it will give Government an opportunity to rehabilitate the some of the public facilities while at the same time helping restore the basic livelihoods of the affected people.”
Gondwe also disclosed that some of the money will be used to restock the Strategic Grain Reserves with 50, 000 metric tonnes of maize which is under the same project.
However, the Minister pleaded with government officials in charge of handling the money to “do things the right way for the sake of the suffering thousands some of whom have lost their lives.”
He implored that humility should call for a for a spirit of sympathy and consideration arguing diverting the money elsewhere for individual gains would be robbing the grieving thousands for the benefit a few individuals which he described it as greed.
Also present at the signing ceremony was World Bank Country Manager, Laura Kullenberg, who disclosed that half of the money was a grant while the other half would be a loan.
She said though the Bank was aware that this is just a small contribution towards the estimated U$ 494 million that Government required for recovery, as established by the Post Disaster Needs Assessment, done by Government in partnership with the Bank, UNDP and EU, the World Bank was sure that the contribution would go a long way in addressing the humanitarian predicament and steering and steering the country back onto its development path.
She has since assured joint efforts between Government and the Bank in ensuring that the project is a success.