What breaks farmers backs?

  Since he  ventured into farming in 2012, Brian Kumwenda has never used any other tool, except a hand hoe he inherited from his parents. The 35-year-old feels weary of the traditional way of farming. “Farming using a hoe is back-breaking,” he says. “It takes a month to till and make ridges in our crop…

Nkhata Bay farmers cry for markets

  Smallholder farmers at Makumbo in Nkhata Bay have decried lack of markets for their crops which they say is limiting efforts to take up farming as a business. Speaking during a field day on Friday, a groundnuts farmer Kachikuwa Mwale said Makumbo is an excluded area located away from conventional markets. He said vendors…

Luanar saves Rumphi livestock from thirst

  Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Luanar) has constructed a water point worth K30 million for livestock in Rumphi. Speaking after handing over the water point at Bolero at the weekend, Luanar vice-chancellor Professor George Kanyama-Phiri said the livestock lacked drinking water due to climate change which has led to the drying up…

Mzuzu City Council staff threaten strike

Mzuzu City Council (MCC) employees have threatened to down tools on Monday should the council’s management fail to pay their salaries dating back to March 2019. The employees took to the streets yesterday in a peaceful demonstration and presented their grievances  to management at the Mzuzu Civic Offices. Presenting the petition, MCC Workers Union member…

Luanar rescues livestock

Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Luanar) has constructed a K30 million water point for livestock in Rumphi. The project has come as a reprieve to animals which used to cover over 10 kilometres in search of drinking water, a trek worsened by drought and other effects of climate change. Speaking during a handover…

Centre moves to counter rigging

The Centre for Multiparty Democracy (CMD) has launched nationwide training sessions for 1 500 party monitors, with a call for them to be vigilant against rigging during the May 21 Tripartite Elections. Already, the Public Affairs Committee (PAC) has instituted an investigation into rigging allegations that President Peter Mutharika, who is Democratic Progressive Party (DPP)…

Gender parity on the farm

Catherine Mkandawire, 33, is a breadwinner of her family. The mother-of-four cultivates on a four-acre tobacco field in Henga Valley singlehandedly.  “I do all the farm chores, but it is my husband who pockets all the money from tobacco sales,” she says. Mkandawire also grows maize for food.  Despite her toil, she says she reaps…

Politicking with  Foundation stones

Recently, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) campaign director Ben Phiri accompanied Minister of Transport and Public Works Jappie Mhango to lay a foundation stone for the construction of a jetty on Likoma Island District. Sceptics say the project is a campaign bait with just weeks to the May 21 Tripartite Elections. Our Staff Reporter JOHNCHIRWA caught…

Red Cross organises crowd control drills

Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS) has organised trainings to equip its volunteers with first aid skills to handle stampedes and violence related to the May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections. Speaking in Mzuzu on Wednesday after opening the training for the Northern Region, MRCS secretary general McBain Kanongodza said the organisation is taking precautionary measures considering…

The CCAP Synod of Livingstonia Development Department (Soldev) says more farmers in Rumphi are adopting the climate-smart agriculture technique of conservation agriculture, but some resistance remains in the district. Speaking during a field day on Saturday, Soldev project coordinator Richard Sulu said the organisation has covered 480 hectares with conservation agriculture technology out of the…

Faith Mussa to release  tour documentary

Musician Faith Mussa, through Ujeni Records that manages and promotes Malawian artists, will next week release a documentary that contains three live performances he had in Scandinavia last year. Ujeni Records founder Karstein Grønnesby said in a statement the documentary will give the audience a snapshot into the world of Faith Mussa and an insight…

Communities at war with stray animals

When teachers at Chitenje and Kaombe primary schools heard that two elephants had strayed out of Nkhotakota Wildlife Reserve last October, they suspended classes instantly. The ripples of fear were far-reaching as farmers in Chitenje, three kilometres from the protected area, abandoned their crop fields for fear of being trampled by the massive mammals on…

Tackling illicit ivory trade

In this series, our Staff Reporter JOHN CHIRWA tracks footprints of poachers in the country’s tourist attractions. Reverend Kanyimbo, 26, is not a pastor, but a man behind the bars. Last year, he was sentenced to four years  imprisonment for vending ivory. The convict, from Matulo Village along the western borderline of Nyika National Park,…

Govt launches K10bn Likoma Port project

Minister of Transport and Public Works Jappie Mhango on Wednesday officially launched construction of a K10 billion port in Likoma. According to designs we have seen, the port is expected to have a jetty, warehouse, offices, customs and immigration offices, ablution blocks, restaurant, passenger lounge and an access road. Speaking in an interview  after laying…

Mzimba farmers receive tractors

Development Fund of Norway, through Mzuzu-based Find Your Feet (FYF) organisation, has launched the Small-scale Farm Mechanisation Pilot Project in Mzimba to transform and improve the agricultural sector. For a start, the project has supported six farmers with a two-wheeled tractor each and accessories such as a trailer and a planter valued at K14.9 million.…

Mzimba records 245 child marriage cases

World Vision Malawi (WVM) says about 245 children were married in Mzimba last year, a situation which has put at stake their future, health and education. WVM director of programmes Charles Chimombo made the revelation in Mzimba on Saturday during the launch of the ‘It Takes Malawi to End Child Marriage’ campaign for the Northern…

Mzuzu youths shoot The Pursuit of Justice

Unlimited Youth Organisation (UYO), Mzuzu-based organisation focusing on arts and film production, is shooting a movie titled The Pursuit of Justice which exposes challenges people face in search for justice. The action-packed movie is an adaptation of a stage play The Dark Cloud written by former Mzuzu University lecturer Mapopa Sanga who is now based…

Clergy embraces climate change adaptation

Churches in the Northern Region have united in prayer and action against effects of climate change in the country. This follows a conference at Ekwendeni in Mzimba on Tuesday where church leaders from various denominations met to share issues on environmental care and create a movement to speak with one voice on issues affecting the…

Chilima, Jappie fight over Njakwa-Livingstonia Road

Vice-President Saulos Chilima and Minister of Transport and Public Works Jappie Mhango have been involved in a verbal tirade over the progress of the 75-kilometre Njakwa-Livingstonia Road project in Rumphi. Speaking during a televised rally in Rumphi as leader of UTM Party after touring the road on March 9, Chilima called on President Peter Mutharika…