Sub Traditional Authority (ST/A) Sale of Machinga has appealed for emergency food assistance, saying his area is hard hit by hunger and malnutrition.
The chief made the appeal on Wednesday when Road to Relief donated maize flour and beans to 175 households in the area.
He said due to the prolonged dry spell and erratic rains the country experienced in the last growing season, communities harvested less.
“Previously, when hunger struck our area we used to go to Mozambique for pieceworks, but the impact of climate change has also affected the estates we worked on in Mozambique; hence, the alarm. We need relief food immediately,” said ST/A Sale.
Speaking after handing over the foodstuffs, the organisation’s spokesperson, Ajilu Kalitendere, encouraged communities to prepare their fields in readiness for this year’s growing season.
Sale said his area has about 30 000 people. From August to October this year, the Department of Disaster Management Affairs (Dodma) distributed relief maize nationwide, but some chiefs appealed for the initiative to be ongoing.
Chief Malemia of Zomba is one of the traditional leaders who made the appeal in the wake of last year’s low yields following prolonged dry spells and pests.
Machinga district disaster management officer Shepherd Jere said Dodma distributed relief maize to 21 681 households at district level and 719 in ST/A Sale.