Principal Meteorologist and Head of Public Weather Services, Yobu Kachiwanda on Thursday said there was growing tendency by Malawians vandalizing equipment in weather stations saying this deprive people the ability to plan according to weather information.
Kachiwanda said this at Liwonde, Machinga during Participatory Scenario Planning meeting for Mangochi District Council and its partners which was supported by USAID funded Titukulane project.
Kachiwanda said weather station equipment at Mombezi, Thumbwe in Chiradzulu, Naminjiwa in Phalombe, Ntaja in Machinga, Mwimba in Kasungu, Nyachilenda and Ngabu in Chikwawa among other areas was vandalized over the years adding replacement of the equipment required a lot of resources.
“People must own the weather equipment in their areas,” the Principal Meteorologist and Public Weather Services said adding that partners that intend to ey adequately sensitize communities on the importance of weather information.
In the meantime Titukulane project implemented by Emmanuel International in Mangochi intends to instin the district in nine traditional authorities to assist farmers and other community members with weather information.
Speaking during the meeting Titukulane Programme Manager at Emmanuel International, Dr. Mathews Tsilizeni said the program value weather and seasonal forecast.
He added this was so as Titukulane Project implements activities in line with National Resilience Strategy that relies on weather information to inform farmers to make decision on agricultural activities.
He therefore said the project will install weather equipment in its nine impact areas to assist farmers to plan agricultural activities.
Director of Agriculture and Natural Resources for Mangochi District Council, Enford Kanyimbo called on District Civil Protection Committee and partners in the district to develop a cocation stagey that should facilitate weather information disseminationto people in the district.
He then called on the Department of Climate Change and Meteorological Services to release district specific weather forecast before the start of agricultural season this month saying this was crucial to farmers as it informs them on the type of crops to plant.
The Department Climate Change and Meteorological Services disclosed that it will release seasonal and district specific seasonal weather forecast information before the start of rainy season in October which runs up to April.
Mangohi District Council and its partners plan to disseminate district specific weather and seasonalrict.