Speaking in a District Executive Committee (DEC) meeting on Friday 21st September 2018 in Chitipa, Chief Rehabilitation Officer for DODMA, Fyawupi Mwafongo, said disasters come unexpectedly hence the need to step in.
This follows a prolonged dry spell and Fall Armyworms attack on various crops in the district.
“In the just ended rainy season most parts of the country were hit hard by dry spells more especially in Southern Region, therefore, even if the next year’s general elections were to happen two or three years ahead, still more, this food distribution exercise could have happened,” Mwafongo emphasized.
The remarks by Mwafongo came in as a response to stakeholders who attended the meeting where some asked DODMA about strategies that have been put in place so that the exercise should really reach those who are needy.
“We are going towards 2019 general elections, however people may have different views towards this relief program, some might say it has been planned deliberately as a campaign tool for government. We want to know if whether there are certain strategies so that there is no political interference,” One of the participants asked.
In his response Mwafongo added that, the food to be distributed is coming from National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA), he however urged people to take the exercise as a normal response from the department that can come at any time when disaster crisis has occurred.
Meanwhile, the Department has asked stakeholders in the district such as District Agricultural Officer (DADO) among others to come up with a list of families who are in food acute situation.
According to the recent preliminary assessment about 3.3 million people across the country are food insecure and each house targeted will receive 50 kilogram of maize.