Written by MANENO CHIMULALA
MZUZU--Malawi government has urged the private sector to complement its efforts in assisting people affected by hunger and natural disasters.
Secretary and commissioner in the Department of Disaster Management Jeffrey Kanyinji made the appeal Friday as Press Trust donated to families affected by hunger due to floods.
Speaking during the presentation of 1000 bags of maize and 50 bags of beans courtesy of Press Trust, Kanyinji said the number of flood victims is increasing every day hence the need for the private sector to jump in and help the victims.
"Government alone cannot manage assisting all the communities hit by the floods. There is a need for private sector partnership to ensure that all victims are reached and assisted accordingly," said Kanyinji as he applauded Press Trust.
In his remarks, a trustee for Press Trust, George Kayambo, said they thought it was important to make the donation.
“For many years we have worked with the department of disaster management affairs in assisting people affected by disasters. we procure maize and we leave the responsibility for distributing the food items in the hands of DDMA because these are the people who know where the victims are.
"We are sure that the donation will reach the intended victims,” said Kayambo.
Floods have affected the country with the southern region being the hardest hit. A recent inter-agency assessment estimated that over 33,000 people have been displaced leaving many people without shelter or clothing. Crops have been destroyed in Mangochi, Phalombe and Nsanje districts, while over 20 schools have been disrupted, affecting thousands of children.
The persistent rains have destroyed roads making access to flooded areas difficult for the delivery of relief materials. Food, emergency shelter, medical supplies and other non-food household items such as blankets, buckets and pots are urgently needed for the affected families.
The flooding has also compromised access to safe water, sanitation and overall hygiene in the affected communities. Many displaced families have sought shelter in schools using them as kitchens and bedrooms resulting in considerable damage to school furniture and disruption of learning in at least 20 locations.