By Synd Kalimbuka
Member of Parliament for Zomba Ntonya constituency Ned Poya is expected to spend over K9 Million in a project where he is roofing houses of elderly people with iron sheets.
Speaking when he appreciated how the project has started, Thyolo Central constituency member of parliament Ben Phiri described Poya as game changer who wants to improve living standards of elderly people by providing such support in the next five years.
Phiri who has so far managed supported 25 elderly people with the same initiative in his constituency using personal resources said such people need to be respected and assisted because they face challenges in their lives.
He encouraged other people including those living in the villages to emulate the same by taking care of elderly people.
“Just by roofing houses with iron sheets to these people one can be blessed. Everyone can take part in giving any kind of support to an elderly person in his village using the local available resources,” said Phiri.
He added that if the area is to develop, there should be spirit of sharing and supporting each other. He then urged people in Zomba Ntonya to continue supporting and work in collaboration with their MP in development activities believing that in so doing it is simple to bring development.
In his remarks, Ned Poya said he appreciates the challenges people in his constituency including elderly face such as lack of portable water, food and shelter.
“Vulnerability of such kind is very painful, that’s why I have decided to be assisting elderly people by roofing their houses with iron sheets using my personal money,” said Poya.
Poya who is also leader of United Democratic Front (UDF) in parliament said he did not promise people to implement this project during his campaign but decided to implement this project after learning from Thyolo Central Constituency where Ben Phiri started implementing the same project and the elderly people shine.
He promised to be supporting elderly people by roofing one house monthly for a period of 5 years.
So far the MP has managed to roof two houses of Beatrice Jamu of Chilumba village Group Village Headman Nyezelera in Sub Traditional Authority Chimbalanga and Ellen Nyson of Chikumbu village Traditional Authority Chikowi in the district.
Group village Headman Nyezelera hailed Poya for the initiative saying it will really transform lives of elderly people in the area.
“We appreciate for empowering community to identify one vulnerable elderly person whose house will be thatched with iron sheets,” said Nyezelera.
He further asked Poya to continue supporting such people as one way of reducing their vulnerability.
One of the beneficiaries Beatrice Jamu was very thankful for the support saying she used to sleep in a leaking grass thatched house.
“I am very humbled to be supported in such a way that my life is now safe,” she said.
She further called for food assistance support saying people in the area including the elderly are struggling to get food.