Beneficiaries of Descent and Affordable Housing Subsidy Programme (DAHSP) in Mchinji have hailed government for the implementation of the programme saying it has transformed their living standards.
The beneficiaries told YFM that life was tough as most of them were living in dilapidated, mud and grass thatched houses which were prone to misfortunes during rainy season.
According to one of the recipient Elisa Pontino from Kapanira village in the area of traditional Authority Kamwendo, for many years he has been struggling to buy iron sheets and cement to upgrade his three bedroom house.
Pontino, a father of three children never imagined himself and his family owning a descent house with corrugated iron sheets and floored with cement.
“I have been living in a dilapidated, mud and grass thatched house for many years, but look at me now I am a proud owner of this descent house,” he explained.
This is how the DAHSP, popularly known as malata and cement subsidy is transforming the lives of poor people in the rural areas in Mchinji district.
Through the media tour organized by the ministry of lands, housing and urban development, YFM has established that the program has progressed well in the district in its first phase.
The District Commissioner Rosemary Nawasha said most of the houses earmarked during the first phase have been completed.
However, Nawasha has requested the responsible ministry to develop mechanism that suppliers are delivering building materials within the agreed time and also consider to incorporate a component of solar provision in the second phase of the programme.
Commenting on the issue of solar power, Public Relations officer in the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Charles Vintula said discussions are underway with the Ministry of Energy, Mining and Natural Resources.
“We are egaging our counterparts in the ministry energy, mining and natural resources to assess the proposal in terms of cost and suppliers of solar energy, hopefully the element will be added to the program,” Vintula said.
Mchinji has over 450 people earmarked to benefit from the Descent and Affordable Housing Subsidy Program.