The Japanese Government through the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has come to the rescue of Malawian hunger situation and Malnutrition by donating US$7.3million (MK5.4 billion).
Speaking on Wednesday in Lilongwe, Ambassador of Japan, Shuichiro Nishioka, said the assistance has come about because of the food insecurity the country is facing due to the January 2015 floods and prolonged dry spell, which led to the food shortage which will affect 2.83 million people.
He added that the funding is a response to the call made by President Prof Peter Mutharika for support from development partners to complement Governments’ resources in assisting the food insecure households in the country.
He said “It is against this background that the Government of Japan committed to provide US$7.3 million (MK5.4 billion) for humanitarian aid to Malawi.
“Allow me to elaborate more about this assistance, will be channeled into the country through two United Nations Agencies of World Food Programme (WFP) and UNICEF.”
According to Nishioka, WFP will be given US$5 million (MK3.7 billion)to support the ongoing relief response activities of mainly targeting households rendered food insecure by devastating floods and dry spell in 2015 and UNICEF will be given US$2.3 million (MK1.7 billion ) to respond to malnutrition particularly children in 21 Districts.
He further said he was hopeful that the assistance will go a long way to improve food security among vulnerable households as well as build the country’s capacity to effectively address malnutrition particularly children affected by the drought and hunger that occurred last year.
Malawi’s Minister of Finance, Goodall Gondwe said the assistance from Japan shows that the relationship between the two countries is beneficial.
Gondwe said that the country is very grateful for the assistance which he said will benefit a lot of vulnerable women and children who are facing food shortages.
The fund will support approximately 6,000 children deemed to be at risk of cholera as well as provide screening at Village Clinics for 360,000 children.
The assistance was received by the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Goodall Gondwe and WFP, Programme Deputy Country Director, Mieczyslaw Maj.mana