Walter Mswazie Masvingo Bureau
No one will die of hunger in Masvingo province despite the El-Nino weather phenomenon, a senior Government official has said.
The Minister of State for Masvingo Provincial Affairs Ezra Chadzamira said Government was working to ensure the country had adequate stocks of feed families in deficit areas.
Nearly 350 000 people across the province are in urgent need of food aid, with the majority of them in rural areas. Some parts of the province were also still reeling from effects of last season’s erratic rains that affected yields.
Addressing a Zanu-PF provincial coordinating committee meeting at the party’s provincial headquarters over the weekend, Cde Chadzamira said plans were underway to increase the amount of food being given to the vulnerable communities in the province.
Cde Chadzamira, who is also the Zanu-PF Masvingo provincial chair, revealed Government had started assisting 70 families at Chingwizi in Mwenezi East whose homes were destroyed by a hailstorm early this month.
“I want to assure the province of Masvingo that no one will die of hunger despite the looming El-Nino phenomenon, as Government has adequate food in stock,” said Cde Chadzamira.
He said it was Government’s duty to ensure that vulnerable or needy communities received food to avert drought.
“We are going to increase the amount of maize grain that we give to those in need of food as the number of food insecure families is likely to increase. This is due to the fact that most people’s food reserves are now empty,” he said.
“We are also going to give $1 000 to each of the 70 affected families in Chingwizi. I am also visiting the families on Tuesday (today) with some food and non-food items for their welfare.”
Turning to the protest instigated by the MDC-Alliance and the ZCTU last week which left a trail of destruction countrywide, Cde Chadzamira hailed the people of Masvingo for remaining calm.
“We want to thank our people here for remaining calm during last week’s disturbances,” he said.
“Let us remain peaceful and concentrate on developing our economy. I also urge youths to submit bankable projects, for funding.”
The Department of Meteorological Services has predicted that Zimbabwe will this year be hit by El Nino which will see average to below average rainfall falling in most parts of the country.
Masvingo and most southern parts of the country are likely to be affected the most.