MALAWI – The Malawi Civil Society Agriculture Network (CISANET) launched a new agriculture strategic plan 2019 – 2023 under the theme “Together for a vibrant agriculture.”

The plan aims to transform and assist farmers on access to markets, livestock development, nutrition friendly and resilient agriculture sector working towards evidence based, result focused, accountable and impactful network.

According to CISANET National Director, Pamela Kuwali, “The strategic plan will guide the definition of the theme, areas of focus and allocation of financial, human and leadership sources.”

“The development of strategic plans applies more focus and rigor, through outcomes investments orientation to envisioned achievements of the National Agriculture Policy (NAP) and Investment Policy (NAIP),” she added.

One of the point of concerns was the livestock sector which can be revived and become more beneficial to small holder farmers and the country’s economy if the sector is given policy direction and befitting extension services.

Some member organisations of CISANET have been tasked to champion the Livestock, Agriculture and Dairy Development (LADD) thematic area in order to generate keen interest of many other stakeholders to begin to promote investments into livestock production, animal health and welfare in the hope of diversifying farmers livelihoods.

Minister of Agriculture, Kondwani Nankhumwa said CISANET strategic plan would be an opportunity for collaboration and cooperation among key stakeholders in the agricultural sector to harness synergies.

“National agriculture policy recognizes the roles of various stakeholders in ensuring that the ambitious targets in the documents are attained and surpassed,” he said.

Nankhumwa said that the agriculture sector is facing numerous challenges and keeps evolving so the government is committed to respond to these challenges through sufficient budget allocations and policy implementation.

He highlighted that the ministry needs strong partnerships with multiple stakeholders to respond to these challenges.

The Minister assured that the new strategic plan, CISANET would position itself to map all nonstate actors and present this information to them as part of contributions to monitoring and evaluation of the performance of the sector.

“CISANET Strategic Plan has been developed through a thorough consultative process and it is really speaking to the prevailing context,” he pointed out.