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Lazarus Chakwera hopeful on food security, power supply

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William Liabunya

President Lazarus Chakwera Wednesday said Malawi is on course to generating enough power for domestic and industry use as well as attain goals on the food security front.

He said this when he inspected Shire Valley Transformation Programme works, which he described as a game-changer in the fight against hunger in the country.

The President also appreciated reconstruction works at Kapichira Hydro Electricity Generation Plant, expressing hope that it will be up and running by December this year.

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“Nobody is, and in particular I am not, happy with these persistent electricity blackouts. At a time we are targeting 1,000 megawatts by 2025, we ended up losing the generation capacity we had due to Cyclone Ana. I specifically asked the Egenco [Electricity Generation Company] team [about] when the Kapichira plant will be up and running and I am convinced that it will be ready by December,” he said.

Egenco Chief Executive Officer William Liabunya told Chakwera that, under phase one of construction works, opening of the water channel is at 90 percent while repair of spillway gates is at 40 percent.

On the Shire Valley Transformation Project, Chakwera said this is the type of long-term investment which Malawi needs for sustainable development and food sufficiency, which are some of the goals in the Malawi 2063 vision.

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Chakwera said subsidies with no exit strategy will not take the country anywhere as it will continue crying out for help every time it is faced with disasters.

“Malawi has to wean itself from donor dependence but that requires all Malawians to make painful sacrifices for the greater good. It requires patriotism, not putting personal selfish interest by stealing public resources allocated to investments like the Shire Valley Transformation Programme. Long-term sustainable investments which go beyond our life expectancies are key to the realisation of our aspirations. When completed, the Shire Valley Transformation Programme, which covers 43,570 and is the biggest in this side of Africa, will turn Malawi into a food basket and a real economic hub,” he said.

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