Dowa receives 50 percent of AIP fertilizer as markets not yet opened

By Vincent Gunde

Dowa district has received 50 percent of Affordable Input Programme (AIP) out of its allocation but as of 6th November, 2023 the district has not yet started selling the fertilizer because of some errors that were traced in some areas.

Dowa District Council’s Chairperson Councilor Mayamiko Kambewa, said some names of beneficiaries appearing in the registers are not qualifying to appear, a development that has led to the delay of the process.

Kambewa said Agricultural Extension Development Officers (AEDOs) have gone back to their catchment areas to verify the names so that they should come up with a clean register for names that deserve to be the rightful beneficiaries.

He expressed hope that the verification of names has been done by 5th November, 2023 and selling of fertilizer to the beneficiaries will start during the week claiming that almost 50 percent fertilizer is in the district and markets have full fertilizer in stock.

The council chairperson said there have been concerns of mobile vending of fertilizer to be meeting challenges on the claims that Members of Parliament will allocate more fertilizer to the demarcated constituencies where they are optimistic to bounce back into Parliament.

“This has been resolved that 2 to 3 selling points will be open to sale AIP fertilizer in constituencies which seems not to belong to the incumbent Parliamentarian,” said Kambewa.

But, a Malawi Congress Party (MCP) diehard from Mvera in Dowa district Rodgers Kamphangala, expressed his sadness that fertilizer is in the district but names of beneficiaries and date for opening markets has not been communicated to the district describing this as a worrisome development.

Kamphangala said most of the villagers in the district are complaining of not been included as beneficiaries citing the new created Dowa Central East Constituency where only 3,000 beneficiaries will access AIP in the 2023/2024 farming season.

He said Dowa Central East covers Nalunga, Byzanzi, part of T/a Mkukula up to Tembwe observing that identifying only 3,000 beneficiaries, is a grave mistake the Government of the MCP has done to the Dowa people.

The MCP diehard said Group Mdzikometsa has 8 beneficiaries, Group Gawamadzi and the surrounding Group Village heads have 12 reminding President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera that Dowa besides been the bedroom of the MCP, it provided thousands of votes for him to be in government.

“AIP has exposed Dowa to be not the bedroom of the MCP, many people have been left out, this will be a litmus test to President Chakwera as he is preparing to bounce back into government in 2025,” said Kamphangala.

He said AIP has proved to be useless to the Dowa people warning President Chakwera and the MCP not to take the Dowa people for granted advising three Cabinet Ministers of the district; Richard Chimwendo Banda, Halima Daudi and Sam Dalitso Kawale to rethink of the Dowa people on AIP.