A food crisis is looming in Muzarabani following a prolonged dry spell and the situation is likely to further worsen after the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society and World Food Programme (WFP) withdrew its support meant to cushion food insecure households.
Poor yields from the previous season and a prolonged dry spell this season has left many households in Muzarabani food insecure.
The villagers have been beneficiaries of the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society and WFP’s Lean Season Assistance Programme, where each household would receive a cash transfer, cooking oil and porridge for five-year-olds and younger.
However, the programme has been cut short leaving a serious food crisis looming.
“We came up with this programme in January with the aim of cushioning the food insecure households who were not spared by the devastating effects of drought. We are, however, withdrawing the programme and appeal for government and stakeholders to come to the villagers’ rescue,” said Zimbabwe Red Cross Society provincial manager – Muzarabani, Mr Lucky Gotekwa.
The prolonged dry spell which characterised the 2019 farming season left many households in Muzarabani food insecure, a situation that has been further worsened by poor yields the previous season.
Gogo Chiranganai Chimsoro of Hoya, who lives with her 3 orphaned
grandchildren, is one of the many villagers in Muzarabani who are in dire need
of food assistance as her crops were a complete write off.
“I live with my 3 grandchildren whose parents are no more. In my old age I have lost my physical mobility and cannot fend for them. The weather has not been too lenient with us this side as we did not harvest anything at all,” said Gogo Chimsoro.
Muzarabani, a low lying area in the Zambezi basin, is prone to high
temperatures and erratic rains which is favourable for the white gold cotton
crop and small grains.