At a staggering 13 million, the population of Malawi continues to grow, according to population experts – and this is no exciting news. The many children Malawians are having are hindering economic growth.

This is according to Minister of Economic Planning and Development Atupele Muluzi.

He told a public gathering in the central region district of Mchinji that population growth is a serious matter that needs to be observed seriously for the sake of the country’s economic growth.

Mr. Muluzi said if the country does not consider putting in place measures to control the growth of its population, issues of development, health, the economy and education among others will be affected due to un-availability of resources.

In other words, he said the resources will be too few to carter for the growing number of citizens occupying this 118,000 km2 land.

He said countries all over the world take time to plan for their development work that it should meet the required standards of their population.

To that effect he said, “Malawi will soon release its development plan which will help in as far as population growth in the country is concerned.”

Mr. Muluzi then asked Malawian men to use their influence to create a positive change in family planning by allowing women to take up modern family planning methods to avoid unwanted pregnancies

In his thinking unplanned pregnancies are contributing high to population growth in the country.

A largely conservative state, Malawi is yet to fully embrace scientific family planning methods which are highly embroiled in negative taboo.

“Family planning is a basic human right and it remains meaningless, unless individuals and couples have access to contraceptives, information and services to enable them to exercise that right,” said Athanasie Nzokirishaka, the representative of the United Nations population agency UNFPA to Malawi.

The event in Mchinji was held to commemorate the 2012 World Population Day. This year’s theme is “Universal Access to Reproductive Health Services.”

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