Bingu’s dreamed Nsanje World Inland Port turns into weeding venue

NSANJE-(MaraviPost)-The much-touted Nsanje World Inland Port project has turned into a venue for weeding ceremonies shuttering the late and former Malawi head of State Bingu Wa Mutharika.

Sources at the site told The Maravi Post that following the current regime not showing interest, the communities resorted to use the port productively.

Over the weekend, one of the Nsanje district council weeded using the site.

Malawi’s taxpayers spent about MK14 billions for its foundations stage before the Mozambique government years ago demanded complete Environmental Impact Assessment before its usage.

Surprising, the port has turned into a mirage after government has now removed it from its top priorities in the next five years.

The incumbent President Peter Mutharika during 2014 elections campaign promised the nation that he will open the port as soon as he took over the leadership from Joyce Banda.

Fours down the line, President Mutharika has never even visited the site to fulfill promises made to Malawians.

Since its inception in 2008, the project—and one of the flagship projects in the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) 2014 manifesto—has been left out of the MGDS III.

The aim of streamlining the sectors is to maximise use of resources on fewer priorities based on recommendations of the country’s donors.

Currently, the Nsanje Port is a swampy fishing ground for locals. It is a neglected site depicting an abandoned dockyard with the Shire River choked by weeds. As of Thursday this week, a disused boat is the only vessel in sight.

In June 2016, the Shire River on the section of the port had completely dried up as if to vindicate Mozambique which questioned the viability of the project which argued that water levels in both Shire and Zambezi rivers were going down.

The drying of the port area was a result of the dwindling of water inflows in the Shire River and Lake Malawi due to the El Nino weather episode experienced in the 2015/16 rainy season which has also affected power generation in the country.

In 2015, Mozambique Minister of Transport Carlos Mesquita said the viability of the waterway project could only be assessed if the consultant determines the behaviour of water levels in the Shire and Zambezi rivers.

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