APES projects decline in Wheat and Cotton production

Lilongwe, Second round of the 2018/19 Agricultural Production Estimates Survey (APES) has predicted that wheat and cotton production in the 2018/19 agricultural season will down slope than before.

APES which is conducted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation and Water Development every year to assess production and productivity on crops, livestock and fisheries, has suggested that wheat and cotton production has been declining over the years and will further go down this year.

Speaking in a Press Conference at the Capital Hill in Lilongwe, the Minister of Agriculture, Minister of Irrigation and Water Development, Joseph Mwanamvekha said over the years wheat production has been going down because it is a winter crop as such it depends on irrigation making it expensive to grow, hence, exported wheat is cheaper than locally grown.

Unlike other years, this time wheat is expected to marginally decline by 2.06 per cent due to seed unavailability and lack of better markets, he said.

Mwanamvekha pointed out that cotton production would decline especially in areas where they have been hit by heavy rainfall despite the government injecting about 600 metric tonnes of cotton and pesticides to boost production.

‘This year some parts of Malawi especially Mangochi and lower shire have been affected by heavy rainfall which has ensued into floods. As such, this has had a negative impact on cotton production, he said.

The Minister said to improve wheat production in the coming years, government is planning on intensifying irrigation in areas where wheat is grown so that the country should stop relying on exporting from other countries.

Wheat is a winter crop as such It depends on irrigation and it is very expensive for farmers to grow which makes it hard because exported wheat is cheaper than locally grown.

Government is intensifying irrigation to help farmers grown wheat and reduce exportation

Cotton production this year has been affected by the heavy rainfalls which resulted into floods especially Mangochi and lower shire

Source: MANA Online

APES projects decline in Wheat and Cotton production

Lilongwe, Second round of the 2018/19 Agricultural Production Estimates Survey (APES) has predicted that wheat and cotton production in the 2018/19 agricultural season will down slope than before.

APES which is conducted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation and Water Development every year to assess production and productivity on crops, livestock and fisheries, has suggested that wheat and cotton production has been declining over the years and will further go down this year.

Speaking in a Press Conference at the Capital Hill in Lilongwe, the Minister of Agriculture, Minister of Irrigation and Water Development, Joseph Mwanamvekha said over the years wheat production has been going down because it is a winter crop as such it depends on irrigation making it expensive to grow, hence, exported wheat is cheaper than locally grown.

Unlike other years, this time wheat is expected to marginally decline by 2.06 per cent due to seed unavailability and lack of better markets, he said.

Mwanamvekha pointed out that cotton production would decline especially in areas where they have been hit by heavy rainfall despite the government injecting about 600 metric tonnes of cotton and pesticides to boost production.

‘This year some parts of Malawi especially Mangochi and lower shire have been affected by heavy rainfall which has ensued into floods. As such, this has had a negative impact on cotton production, he said.

The Minister said to improve wheat production in the coming years, government is planning on intensifying irrigation in areas where wheat is grown so that the country should stop relying on exporting from other countries.

Wheat is a winter crop as such It depends on irrigation and it is very expensive for farmers to grow which makes it hard because exported wheat is cheaper than locally grown.

Government is intensifying irrigation to help farmers grown wheat and reduce exportation

Cotton production this year has been affected by the heavy rainfalls which resulted into floods especially Mangochi and lower shire

Source: MANA Online

Bingu is legend with a dream still alive – Mutharika

Lilongwe, President Prof Peter Mutharika has hailed late brother, and former Head of State, Bingu Wa Mutharika as a hero the country lost, but a remarkable soul with an unforgettable history.

Mutharika was speaking in Lilongwe, Friday, during the 2019 Bingu Memorial ceremony where he also commissioned the former Head of State’s statue which has been erected outside Parliament building.

Urging the nation to Live the Bingu Dream Mutharika described his brother as one who was a charming family man, a national legend, and an African statesman.

He said: Many Malawians who loved Bingu would have loved to see Bingu alive today in this statue. They would have loved to see himself standinga here alive.

Unfortunately Bingu will never live again. Bingu died but his spirit lives on. The dreamer died but his dream lives on. The visionary died but his vision lives on.

He particularly lauded Bingu for his ambitions of his country’s economic independence, and his unstoppable passion towards his dreams saying he was one who inspired excellence in others.

He further said in Bingu, Africa ought to celebrate an African statesman who urged Africa to turn its resources into wealth saying his African Food Basket dream inspired many Africans.

Bingu reminded us that ‘Africans are poor, but Africa is not poor.’ He challenged us to believe that we are a poor people in a rich world � and never to make poverty our choice, explained Mutharika.

Speaking earlier, Political Advisor to the President, Francis Mphepo, said Bingu would particularly be remembered for his success in poverty eradication and country’s infrastructure development.

He said Bingu was a man who broke regional and tribal barriers by spreading construction of development projects across the whole country.

Source: MANA Online

Bingu is legend with a dream still alive – Mutharika

Lilongwe, President Prof Peter Mutharika has hailed late brother, and former Head of State, Bingu Wa Mutharika as a hero the country lost, but a remarkable soul with an unforgettable history.

Mutharika was speaking in Lilongwe, Friday, during the 2019 Bingu Memorial ceremony where he also commissioned the former Head of State’s statue which has been erected outside Parliament building.

Urging the nation to Live the Bingu Dream Mutharika described his brother as one who was a charming family man, a national legend, and an African statesman.

He said: Many Malawians who loved Bingu would have loved to see Bingu alive today in this statue. They would have loved to see himself standinga here alive.

Unfortunately Bingu will never live again. Bingu died but his spirit lives on. The dreamer died but his dream lives on. The visionary died but his vision lives on.

He particularly lauded Bingu for his ambitions of his country’s economic independence, and his unstoppable passion towards his dreams saying he was one who inspired excellence in others.

He further said in Bingu, Africa ought to celebrate an African statesman who urged Africa to turn its resources into wealth saying his African Food Basket dream inspired many Africans.

Bingu reminded us that ‘Africans are poor, but Africa is not poor.’ He challenged us to believe that we are a poor people in a rich world � and never to make poverty our choice, explained Mutharika.

Speaking earlier, Political Advisor to the President, Francis Mphepo, said Bingu would particularly be remembered for his success in poverty eradication and country’s infrastructure development.

He said Bingu was a man who broke regional and tribal barriers by spreading construction of development projects across the whole country.

Source: MANA Online

SADC education system affected with unqualified teachers

Lilongwe, Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) needs to scale up its efforts in addressing challenges affecting the education sector which UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa has said is rocked with unqualified teachers in the teaching service.

UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa Head of Education Division, Carolyne Medel-Anonvevo told journalists Monday in Lilongwe during a two-day regional workshop on Continuous Professional Development (CPD) of Teachers in SADC.

She said the region is being faced with common problems which hinders quality of education in most member countries.

Anonvevo observed that despite other challenges the education sector in the region is facing, the main and common challenge in the region is unqualified teachers which she said needs to be addressed with the urgency that it deserves.

As you increase access to primary and secondary teachers you also need to accelerate the training of teachers but we have a situation where we have increasing numbers of students who study to become teachers but at the same time in the system they are a lot of unqualified teachers, she said.

Anonvevo said teachers are central to quality education and as such governments should strive to improve quality education by addressing teacher challenges through prioritizing funds for skills development in order to address challenges the education sector is facing.

Despite this challenge, she said some countries are now trying to catch up by upgrading teachers who are already in the teaching service by offering them possibilities to upgrade.

You cannot have qualified teachers if government does not prioritise funds to train teachers whether it is pre-service or continuous professional development. Governments have to really make sure that teachers are at the core of national education policies, Anonvevo said.

She said that the SADC region is at different levels saying in some countries one could be a teacher just by having a certificate while in others one needs to have a University degree and as such the challenge, though common in the region, could be addressed differently.

Anonvevo bemoaned the high pupil teacher ratio which she said is high in most member countries with some having 120 students against one teacher which she described as not good.

She said it is for this reason that the member states have come together to share their experiences in terms of standards, teaching practices and continuous professional development so that through sharing of such experiences they could learn from one another.

Asked to say if UNESCO is satisfied with the quality of teachers trained in SADC member states institutions, Anonvevo could not come out clearly but said her organisation doesn’t impose its standards.

What we try to do is look at what countries are doing. At the moment, governments are not satisfied with the quality of trained teachers and that is why they came to us for assistance, she said.

Principal Secretary for Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Justin Saidi described the workshop as critical in uplifting education standards in the region saying the region cannot talk about education and forget teachers.

That is why you see government making sure that teachers are given appropriate teaching and learning materials, given accommodation where it is available and promoted. We need to have teachers that can move from one step to another, train them, coach them while at the same time upgrading them, he said.

Just like the UNESCO-ROSA Head of Education Unit, Saidi bemoaned the high pupil teacher ratio the country is experiencing saying government is addressing that through recruiting more teachers as well as constructing additional teacher training colleges.

For the last five years, government has recruited 48,000 teachers.

Meanwhile teacher training colleges are being constructed in Rumphi, Chikwawa and Mchinji.

Malawi National Commission for UNESCO Acting Deputy Executive Secretary, David Malera said despite challenges the education sector is facing in the region, CPD has made tremendous progress so far singling out Malawi as one which has done well.

There are nine countries in SADC region where UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa looks at and Malawi is one of the countries that have made very good progress in developing the CPD framework, he said.

Malera said the challenge has been having establishments that should put what has been developed into action as well as resource mobilization to support the implementation of the CPDs.

To understand the complexity of teacher issues in Southern Africa, the UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa organised a series of meetings and consultations from 2015 to 2018 which generated evidence to advocate for the recognition of teachers as a priority issue on the SADC agenda.

The Workshop has drawn together stakeholders from the Ministries of Education, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Inter-Governmental Organizations, policy and decision makers from SADC region.

They will come up with recommendations that will be presented to the Minister of Education in the region will deliberate on what the experts have developed and then develop policies which will be implemented at national level.

Source: MANA Online