Chakwera wakes up to reality

…no food in Malawi, declares disaster

…Speaker should apologise to Sameer Suleiman

President Lazarus Chakwera, on Saturday, in a classic flip-flop legacy of his leadership, ate a humble pie and confessed Malawi has no food, contrary to what he told Malawians on 17 February 2024 and his Ministry of Agriculture’s announcement that Malawi will harvest 3.6 million tons of maize.

No food in Malawi, this is a national disaster – President Chakwera

The President has now changed tune, admitting what Blantyre City East MP Sameer Suleiman was stating that the country has no maize, which resulted in Speaker of Parliament Catherine Gotani NyaHara’s partisan decision to kick him out of parliament.

In his special address to Malawians that attracted innuendos on social media with some christening the President “Mr Disaster,” Chakwera appealed for emergency assistance for 23 of Malawi’s 28 administrative districts, saying up to 600,000 tons of maize were required to feed Malawians.

Food estimates shows there wont be enough for the nation

Others have asked Speaker Gotanu NyaHara to apologise to Suleiman for speaking the truth.

President Chakwera declared state of disaster in 23 districts of the country hit by a dry spell caused by El Nino, which has left those districts with little or no harvest.

Suleiman was chased out of parliament when he questioned the levels of the national reserves for maize

The “initial estimate is that close to 600,000 metric tonnes of maize valued at 357.6 billion Kwacha (over 13.67 billion U.S. dollars) will be required for humanitarian response programme,” he said.

Chakwera said the declaration follows his tour across the country in the past months to establish the effects of the harsh conditions Malawians face in the wake of climate change.

However, The Investigator Fact check shows that, during the tours, Mr Chakwera continuously touted his government as delivering, including his stopovers at farms. He declared Malawi was on the path to conquering hunger.

During a stop at Zingwagwa ADMARC, the Ministry of Agriculture cheated Chakwera by stocking maize, and people protested during his visit as the officials lied about the availability of the staple food.

Government released 12,640mt to Admarc but that did not help at all

“He seems to be the last to know about everything in this country. Everyone knew we had no maize except his Minister of Agriculture, and officials had been peddling lies that we had enough food to feed all Malawians. The question is, does the President even feel ashamed to change tunes at every convenient turn?” asked a food expert, who said the media coverage had been extensive on food shortages, but the government was adamant it had food that it would distribute.

Chakwera, for the first time, admitted that hunger would affect close to 2 million farming households while 749,113 hectares of maize, representing 44.3 per cent of the national crop area, have been affected by the harsh conditions.

We need help from the donor community, President Chakwera sounded the SOS

He said other important crops like rice, soya beans, cowpeas, and groundnuts have also been affected.

The president is not expected to take any action on the lying agricultural officials as he has demonstrated so far to have no political spine in case of disasters from stolen COVID money, the recent passport scandal and now the ministry, which has repeatedly denied food shortages and released estimates that 3.6 million tons of maize will be harvested.

An Afrobarometer poll report recently found that 9 in every 10 Malawians do not trust President Lazarus Chakwera’s government to solve any of their challenges.

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