AFRICA/MALAWI - "Malawi is slowly dying of starvation" writes a missionary

Tuesday, 23 August 2016 hunger  

Lilongwe (Agenzia Fides) - "Now it is hard to keep count. It happens in all villages with more and more frequency. Funerals with long vigils in the night and the sad daily processions, the most obvious signs that slowly, Malawi is a Country that is dyimg", said Fr. Piergiorgio Gamba, Monfortan missionary, who sent Agenzia Fides a dramatic testimony on the plight of the Country, hit by the drought that has exacerbated the poor economic conditions due to mainly poor governance.
"Among the first to die are the elderly. Grandfathers and grandmothers who survive with difficulty in normal years, but they cannot win endemic diseases like malaria with which they have learned to coexist.
The lack of food is the main cause of these funerals.
The lack of food is however not the only cause of the deterioration of the elderly. Hospitals do not have much to offer and besides being terribly overcrowded they even lack minimal levels of care.
The Universities in Malawi are experiencing one of the most difficult periods in their history. School fees have increased, over a thousand euro a year for a population that lives below one dollar a day.
High school is now only for the rich. More than 50% of university students no longer attend courses. While the number of students in primary and middle schools is booming, despite the fact that compulsory education does not exist, the lack of textbooks has reached impressive levels and is the major cause of absenteeism and neglect on behalf of students.
The lack of electricity has become a serious problem. The countries south of the Sahara consume 181 kWh per person per year, compared to 6,500 Kwh in Europe. The great evil that plagues Malawi, however, remains corruption. The last changes imposed by the government, the army chief, to local leaders, and the police who are becoming more and more violent have been carried out in preparation for the 2019 elections and not for the common good. Often the call of the President himself addressed to religious leaders stresses moral degradation "Why have we become corrupt people? Why are albinos killed? Why do we hate and envy one another?".
These questions are appropriate, but it is the lack of leadership on behalf of the State that is leading the Country to becoming a "failed state" a country without present or future". (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 23/08/2016)