WB, AFDB engage SV Farmers

Today the SVTP hosted a joint World Bank-African Development Bank mission visit in Chikwawa. The visit started with interactions with representatives of farmers from Mwanaalirenji Cooperative in T/A Kasisi, Chikwawa. Mwanaalirenji is one of the first 5 cooperatives established under the SVTP and officially registered at the Registrar of Cooperative Societies Ministry of Trade and Industry.

Speaking during the visit, SVTP Task Team Leader at the World Bank, Joop Stoutsedijk said there are a lot of decisions cooperatives have to make as they prepare for land consolidation and commercial farming. 

Farmers need to start owning the processes as they prepare for land consolidation and commercial agriculture. The project is recruiting service providers to assist with the development of business plans and establishment of these entities as Smallholder Owned Commercial Farming Enterprises,โ€ he said.

The Mission Team interacting with representatives of Mwanaalirenji Cooperative
AfDB representative making a presentation during the visit

Makulata Mikwamba who is a Board Member of Mwanaalirenji Cooperative advise fellow farmers to take ownership of the farming venture and refrain from selling land.

โ€œMunda umenewu ndi wathu ndiye tikuyenela kutengapo mbali pa zonse zochitika. Tikuchitenga chinthu chimenechi kuti nchofunikila. Anthu akuyenela kupewa kugulitsa malo. Malo ndiye chuma chimene tingasiyile mibadwo imene ikubwela mtsogolomu. Kaundula wa malo amene akuchitika akuno kwathu athandizila kuteteza malo amenewa kuti chitukuko chimenechi chitheke. Zidzakhala zomvetsa chisoni kuti titaye mwayi umenewu.โ€  โ€œThis farm block is ours and we must participate in all the processes taking place. We are taking this life-changing initiative seriously. People should refrain from selling land in the project area. This land is an investment we are making for our future generations. The land registration exercise was meant to secure our land for this development. It will be unfortunate to lose this opportunity,โ€ she said.)  

Commenting on the discussion with the farmers, African Development Bank Senior Water and Sanitation Specialist Lazarus Phiri underscored the importance of the transformation project to national development.

โ€œEveryone is looking at the materialization of this transformative project. There is great expectation that the Shire Valley will be a food basket for Malawi. 

The economic status of our farmers in the Valley will improve for the better,โ€ he said.

The mission also visited the construction site for the Main Canals 1 and 2 were among many activities excavation works are being undertaken and 46kms site clearance has been completed.