Thousands starve in Chikhwawa

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More food aid is needed to save lives of thousands of people facing severe hunger in Chikhwawa district, southern part of Malawi.

This comes as the relief food distribution exercise is in progress in the country.

It has been established that there is an increased number of people in need of food aid, surpassing the initial registered beneficiaries.

The government through the United Nations World Food Programme, is distributing the relief food, in response to a report released in July by the Malawi Vulnerability Assessment report which revealed that up to 1.6 million people in 15 districts are facing hunger.

Addressing visitors from WFP who included the deputy regional director for the organisation Brenda Barton, a representative of senior group village headman Therere, described the number of people currently receiving food in the area as too low comparing to the number of people requiring the assistance.

According to the representative, the number of households in need of food assistance in the area is 3000 but only 527 households are currently receiving aid.

And speaking to Capital fm after witnessing a food distribution exercise in the area, WFP’s country Director Abdoulaye Diop explained that currently the people being targeted are the most vulnerable who include, the elderly, people with disabilities and the poorest who cannot fend for themselves.

Diop however explained that the number of beneficiaries is expected to peak in the course of the operation as more and more contributions from other organisations start to trickle in.

The relief food distribution exercise is scheduled to continue up to March next year.

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