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‘@Verdade EDITORIAL: A malnourished country

Worldwide, children are consider the hope of tomorrow and the guarantors of a nation’s existence. Yet in Mozambique, there seems to be no concern to ensure that future generations are equipped with the capacity and ability to cope with major challenges posed by varied global dynamics.

Nearly half of Mozambican children will grow up without fully developing their physical and intellectual capacities due to malnutrition. Estimates say that at least 44% of Mozambican children are malnourished. This is despite that the country boasts millions of hectares of arable land and ample potential for large-scale agricultural production.

The rehabilitation process for a malnourished child can last up to five years. However, it should be noted that the child would never return to their normal, healthy state. The Government considers agriculture the basis of development of the country, but in practice little or almost nothing is done in to boost agricultural industrialization and community training on food management or nutrition.

When considering the creation of the position of Technical Secretariat for Food Security and Nutrition (SETSAN), it seems as if the Government is concerned with the situation. Instead, the officials are more focused on the extraction of coal, gas, and exports of shrimp, tuna, among other resources. They work on the basis of reports, many of these documents produced in air-conditioned offices spread across up-scale areas of Maputo.

Malnourishment is a significant issue in Mozambique and health indicators urge for action to be taken to reverse the situation. Due to chronic malnutrition, the new generations will not have capacity or skills to work since the poor nutrition affects intellectual development.

The Government has always held the same position: communities do not have enough information about nutrition or how to properly prepare balanced meals. But the big question is, whose responsibility is it to empower these communities and ensure that they make the use of food they produce? Everything indicates that we are building a nation of malnourished citizens. The consequences of this organized negligence will be of gigantic proportions.


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