Authorities in Mangochi have asked organisations that are distributing relief food in the district to conduct a door-to-door verification exercise to assess the beneficiaries amid complaints that some people receiving the items are not poor and are living outside the country.
Speaking to stakeholders during a briefing by Youth Net and Counselling (Yoneco) on its accountability programme in areas where World Food Programme (WFP) is distributing relief items, Mangochi District Social Welfare Officer, Mac Loud Mphande, said the district is concerned about revelations that there are some people who are receiving relief food undeservedly.
Yoneco, with funding from WFP, is implementing a five months project to enhance accountability among affected populations focusing on complaints and feedback mechanism through a help line. The project is being implemented in 12 districts.
The project’s Manager responsible for Media, networking, advocacy and innovations, Charles Banda, said although they are yet to analyse some complaints received so far, the data coming through the project’s call centres shows that a lot of people are dissatisfied with the status of people benefiting from relief items this year.
“Recently, the number of complainants registered has increased from around 600 to 3,000 complaints every day. However, we are yet to establish common challenges which Malawians are facing with the relief items, this is despite that our door-to-door verification exercise establishing that more deserving people were left out of the programme,” Banda said.
In his response, Mphande agreed with Banda, saying as a district, they have also received some complaints ranging from omission of ultra-poor people from the beneficiary list and late delivery of relief items, which he said are derailing the purpose of the relief programme.
“Some local people have also provided information that some of the people that are purportedly benefiting in from the relief items are based South Africa, but they are collecting their relief items through traditional leaders who are conniving with some distributing agents,” Mphande said.
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