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Phalombe launches food distribution exercise

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Government of Malawi, the World Food Programme (WFP) and the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (Adra) on Tuesday launched a food distribution exercise for Phalombe, targeting 44,418 food insecure households.

Officially launching the exercise at Nkhulambe in the district, Phalombe East parliamentarian, Amos Mailosi, applauded the government for partnering with the organisations to make food available for the needy.

“Hunger has been severe in this district this time around and even the figures indicated are not exact, more people need food here and there is need to review the list of beneficiaries. Many are on the blink of starvation because of erratic rainfall that even left our water sources dry. And as a result, even our famous irrigation initiatives have been affected, hence making many people vulnerable to hunger,” he said.

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The distribution exercise is in response to the April 2016 Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee’s (Mvac) assessment, which established a dire need for food relief for the 44,418 households in all the six traditional authority areas in the district.

Each of the beneficiaries is receiving 50-kilogramme bag of maize, five kilogrammes of pulses, one litre of vegetable oil, and three kilogrammes special nutrient mixture for pregnant and lactating mothers once a month for a period of six months.

“This programme is being implemented jointly by Malawi Government and WFP; Adra Malawi has been assigned to implement the programme in Phalombe on behalf of the two, while the overall coordination in the district will be done by the Phalombe District Council,” said WFP’s Field Operations Coordinator, Peter Weke.

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“As of yesterday we have done 25 percent of the distribution in the district and we are impressed by the patience and conduct of the beneficiaries,” he said.

Adra’s Acting Country Director, Michael Usi, said the hunger that has hit Phalombe was entirely out of natural disaster stressing that the people in the district are hardworking and their district has been a reliable food basket for the country.

“But I want to stress that the exercise must continue being executed in a transparent and fair way, let us not give room to corruption. It is also sad that other people sell relief items; please use whatever you receive for the intended purposes,” he said.

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