Minister urges Malawian in Lower Shire  to embrace solar powered irrigation technology

Malawi  Government has handed over three solar powered irrigation sites worth MK300 million to communities in Chikwawa and Nsanje with the hope to curb the hunger which is wrecking havoc in the country.

Msaka at the irrigation site
Msaka at the irrigation site
ECRIP members pose for a photo
ECRIP members pose for a photo

Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining, Dr Bright Msaka presided over the handing over ceremony of the irrigation sites on Monday in Chikwawa district.

He said solar energy is now a source of survival and that communities should embrace it to achieve national development.

The minister commended Christian Aid and other donor partners for establishing the irrigation schemes adding that rain fed agriculture is no longer relevant because of effects of climate change.

On her part, Deputy Head for the Department for International Development (DFID), Fiona Lappin said it is very pathetic to see women and children struggling to buy maize in most of the Admarc depots.

She thinks Malawi has the capacity to feed herself by using solar powered irrigation technology to grow various crops.

Speaking at the event, Paramount Chief Lundu asked government to roll out such technologies across the country if Malawi is to bail itself out of the persistent blackouts.

He said it was worrisome that almost on a daily basis people are experiencing electricity blackout which is contributing to lower production in the country.

The three irrigation sites are Vimvi in Group Village Headman Patalao, under Chief Katunga in Chikwawa district, Melo in Traditional Authority Mbenje and Nsamba under chief Chimombo in Nsanje district earmarked to benefit over 10,000 households.

Other high profiled individuals who attended the solar power irrigation projects handover were members of parliament from Chikwawa and Nsanje, chiefs, donors and Christian Aids Country Manager, Miss Pansi Katenga.

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6 years ago

Congratulations to Christian Aid – a very timely intervention! One thing is not clear to me – do these irrigation schemes supplement government efforts, or are they a substitute for government efforts? Please remind us of what the government is doing to develop irrigated agriculture in Malawi.

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