Food shortage dominates Pac inclusive conference


The current maize situation in the country was one the major critical issues that dominated deliberations during the Pac conference that ended Thursday in Blantyre.

Most delegates questioned government’s persistent claims that maize is available in the country’s Admarc markets.

There was tension after Presidential Adviser on Economic affairs, Collins Magalasi, told the conference that government has purchased maize from Zambia and that currently it is at Mchinji border.


Responding to what Magalasi said, Civil Society Agriculture Network (Cisanet) Executive Director Tamani Nkhono-Mvula said mere rhetoric by government will not feed Malawians.

“The most important aspect of food security is not the availability of the food but whether that food is accessible by those that need it.

The food availability figures are not very clear as different sources are giving us different figures and this rhetoric we are getting on maize availability is not matching with the reality on the ground where people are indeed suffering,” he said.


Nkhono-Mvula further called for clarification from government on the 41,000 metric tonnes of maize which it claims to have bought.

“The Government also reported on Monday that they have 60,000 metrin tonnes in the Strategic Grain Reserves (SGR) while other sources are indicating that the SGR is almost empty with only about 2,000 metric tonnes remaining. The SGR is supposed to have 60,000 tonnes at any one point in time and the figure of 2,000 tonnes remaining, then the current situation is a crisis of highr proportion. Government is not saying the truth about the maize,” said Nkhono-Mvula.

Malawi Congress Party publicity secretary Jessie Kabwila said the maize crisis in the country cannot be over-emphasized, arguing that it is high time government humbled itself and said the truth behind the claims.

“I am speaking from an experienced point of view. I was in my constituency the whole of last week and it’s a shame that Admarc markets in my constituency received the last consignment of maize on January 30. With such kind of situations, how does the whole government shamelessly say the country has maize?” Kabwila argued.

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