Malawi’s Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security says it is geared at developing policies that will see youths being incorporated in various agriculture programmes.
Deputy Minister of Agriculture Ulemu Chilapondwa said this on the sidelines of a youth policy dialogue meeting at Crossroads Hotel in Lilongwe on Wednesday.
The meeting was organised by the Civil Society Agriculture Network (Cisanet) and the Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (Fanrpan).
“Agriculture is seen as an industry for retirees and people with nothing to do, but that is a wrong perception.
“Agriculture is the backbone of the country’s economy and as government, we should develop policies that attract youths to participate in agricultural activities,” said Chilapondwa.
Tamani Nkhono Mvula Cisanet national director, said the issue of participation in agriculture by the youth has serious implications and said the meeting would produce a communiqué to hand to the ministries of youth and agriculture to try to highlight it.
“The national agriculture policy says nothing about the youth likewise the national youth policy, we as Cisanet want issues of youth clearly spelt out in the two policies,” said Nkhono Mvula.
Fanrpan project manager, Sithembile Mwamakamba said the lack of youths in agriculture is an Africa wide problem where the participation is less than 20 percent and that most of the participation is away from the primary production.