UK donates K10.85 bn to Malawi Government for food security

By Chisomo Phiri

The British High Commission (BHC) has donated £5 million which is equivalent to K10.85 billion towards supporting poor Malawian households facing high levels of food insecurity over the next few months.

British High Commissioner to Malawi, Fiona Ritchie told journalists in Lilongwe that the development is in response to the Government of Malawi’s request for external support for its Food Insecurity Response Plan.

“The UK is providing funds for a blend of cash transfers and food distribution. UK-funded support will be distributed by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to over 250,000 people (56,000 households) in areas hardest hit by this year’s lean season.” Said Ritchie.

Fiona Ritchie

She said the idea is to help people avoid having to make difficult survival choices “such as skipping meals, selling assets, or taking children out of school”.

Ritchie added that the UK Government will continue support Malawi’s efforts to curb food price rises and shortages.

“The UK will continue help poor Malawians, whose household finances and ability to feed their families has worsened significantly in the aftermath of Cyclone Freddy. We will continue to help reduce the impact of difficult but necessary economic reforms,” she said.

On Monday, UK Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, hosted a major Food Security meeting in London of 200 Ministers, Heads of International Agencies, philanthropies and companies to galvanise action to reverse the trend of growing food insecurity.

At least 4.4 million people are facing acute food insecurity in Malawi according to the latest Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) analysis.

Half of these households are in southern Malawi.