MADRID, SPAIN: Malawi President Peter Mutharika has pleaded for financial support of at least US $ 375 million (K247 billion) from developed nations to help the country recover from the effects of Cyclone Idai and Cyclone Kenneth.
Mutharika, who is Chairperson of the Least Developed Countries, said this at the Climate Change Summit in Madrid, Spain on Monday.
In his address before delegates from across the globe, the Malawi leader focused on the devastating effects of climate change back home, describing how the country has been left with deep scars.
“Climate Change has devastating consequences on real human lives. Man is at war with nature. Climate change has become the most catastrophic tragedy of our time. In scale, this is a catastrophe that is more colossal than any war known to us,” said President Mutharika.
In March earlier this year, about 1 million people were directly affected.
Official records indicate that an estimated 60 died 672 were injured while many others lost their homes.
He lamented that climate “change is taking innocent lives, frustrating national economies and inflicting untold suffering to many people of the world”.
According to the President, the story of Malawi is similar to that encountered elsewhere.
“In 2015, we had drought that was immediately followed by heavy rains and floods. Crops failed, infrastructure destroyed and people died. In 2016, we had floods. Crops failed, infrastructure destroyed and lives lost,” he said, adding about the sad tale of the fall worm in the 2017/2018 growing season.
“Every time there is a natural disaster, crops fail, the back of our agro-based economy gets broken and the economy falters. And a weak economy takes long to recover from the effects of natural disasters,” he stressed.
Mutharika has since warned that the country would have made more economic progress if not for the setbacks presented by the effects of climate change.
The 25th UN Climate Change Conference is taking place in Madrid, Spain, and will convene from 2-13 December 2019.
It will feature the 25th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 25) to the United Nations Framework Convention to Combat Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 51st meetings of the UNFCCC subsidiary bodies.