President Dr Lazarus Chakwera on Monday abandoned his presidential helicopter and travelled to Makanjira in Mangochi by road to experience what the people of Mangochi and all users of Makanjira Road experience.
He braved the rough terrain of the tattered Makanjira road to experience for himself what people have been going through going and coming from Makanjira.
The Makanjira has been in bad shape for years. The situation was worsened by Cyclone Freddy early this year as the road became nearly impassable.
He wanted to see for himself what people are going through and how his administration can intervene to bring lasting solutions hence the drive to Makanjira.
President Chakwera experienced the road in his way to Makanjira for the official launch of the construction of the state-of-the-art martenity wing at Mangochi.
Speaking at a development rally on Monday after touring the construction site and breaking ground and laying a foundation stone for the facility, Chakwera is said his administration has already identified money for the construction of the road and over five bridges.
He said money for the construction of the road has been secured from Saudi Arabia.
Turning to the maternity wing project, Chakwera said that the launch of this project is a big deal.
He added that even though maternal mortality rate in the country has significantly dropped, this is not the case in Makanjira and couldn’t think of a better Mother’s Day gift than this facility that will significantly reduce deaths of mothers when giving birth.
Chakwera said that the launch of this project is not as a mere show but his office makes sure that before a project is launched there are materials and appropriate budget available.
He added that he will personally be checking the progress of the project to make sure that it is completed.
He thanked the government of Iceland for the state-of-the-art facility which will see mothers lives being safeguarded and said as a nation, Malawi is blessed to have friends like these.
In his remarks, Senior Chief Makanjira expressed gratitude to the president over the extension of the health centre.
He said most women would travel long distances to seek medical attention and others losing their lives during child birth.
He said that this project will rectify such challenges.
Member of Parliament for Mangochi North constituency, Benedicto Chambo said it was a great day for the people of Makanjira as the project has not only helped people to have easy access to medical attention but it has also given jobs to people in the area in construction, among others.
Head of Mission of Embassy of Iceland Inga Petursdottir said the government of Iceland has been a steadfast partner to Malawi for 35 years with the guiding light of “leaving no one behind”.
“The construction of Makanjira State of the Art Maternity Ward is a testimony to the effort of providing health care access to people living in hard-to-reach areas and is one of the pillar stones of Iceland funded health programming in Mangochi,” she said.
Also speaking at the event, Minister of Local Government, Unity and Culture Richard Chimwendo expressed his gratitude to the people of Iceland who have funded this project which will see a lot of people’s lives improving in the area.
He went on to thank the State President for building strong relations with other countries as in turn, they help the nation with different development initiatives such as the health center.
Secretary General for Malawi Congress party, Eisenhower Nduwa Mkaka commended the president for being a great leader by bringing development works that benefit the people of Malawi.
The one-year project will be implemented through the Mangochi District Council with funding from the Government of Iceland at a cost of MK2.5 billion. The facility will benefit over 120,000 people of Makanjira.