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    CHAKWERA CHALLENGES POPULATION EXPERTS TO ADDRESS DEMOGRAPHIC CHALLENGES ROCKING AFRICA

    President Lazarus Chakwera on Wednesday made a call to population experts to seek lasting solutions to challenges that affect resource allocation towards various groups of people within societies.

    He was speaking yesterday at the opening of the 9th African Population Conference at the Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC) in Lilongwe.

    President Chakwera urged participants to focus on finding solutions to the numerous demographic related problems engulfing Africa other than spending time and resources on issues of less value to the much sought-after development of the continent.

    “I am therefore looking forward to this conference being a solution-oriented conference, not a competition on who can complain about Africa the loudest.

    “This is a new Malawi for a new Africa, and we are too busy focusing on finding solutions to waste any time on meetings that add no value to the creation of the Africa We Want,” said Chakwera at the very end of his speech.

    The Malawi leader also spoke against afro-pessimism in the analysis of the booming African population and coining of remedial actions aimed at reducing it. He argued that those against the growing African population contend that it exerts pressure on the continent’s meagre resources when in truth, Africa is endowed with vast resources to meet the needs of its people.

    “I know that the most popular thing to do at conferences like this is to discuss Africa’s population from a remedial perspective, the kind that says that there are too many of us Africans in this world and that we Africans are simply breeding too much and need to be controlled because they are placing too much pressure on Africa’s natural resources and thereby exacerbating our own poverty and inequality.

    “But I find that this kind of thinking and narrative is over-simplistic and smacks of afro-pessimism, for if there is a continent in the world that has enough natural resources to sustain its people, it is Africa, for I doubt that there is anyone in this room who does not know that the unequal distribution of Africa’s natural wealth is less a factor of its population and more a factor of its mismanagement by the greedy Governments  within  and its  theft  through unfair international trade policies by the greedy Governments without,” argued Chakwera.

    Themed, “Road to 2030: Leveraging Africa’s human capital to achieve transformation in a world of uncertainty,” the main aim of the conference is to examine the state of knowledge gaps regarding various populations and development issues impacting the African continent.

    Accompanying the state president Dr. Lazarus Chakwera was the Prime Minister of Iceland, Bjarni Benediktsson, who is in the country for a five – day official visit.

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