15 years ago Blantyre was named world’s top city: Now big slum

In 2001 Malawi’s commercial capital, Blantyre was named the world’s most desirable habitation and today the new Mayor, Noel Chalamanda is striving to get the city back to its lost glory.

Mayor Chalamanda  of Blantyre

Mayor Chalamanda of Blantyre

Blantyre  urban squeeze -Ndirande

Blantyre urban squeeze -Ndirande

Blantyre , according to a report which was published in The Guardian newspaper of UK in 2001, Blantyre was named the the best city in the world to live as cheaper than New York, more peaceful than Paris and cleaner than London.

It was crowned the city where the highest quality of life for housing, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment can be purchased at the cheapest price in a poll of the most popular business centres in the world.

But today, 15 years later 60 out of every 100 people in Blantyre City are living in slums, which occupy 30 percent of the city’s land, which makes the country’s commercial city one big slum

Last year when members of Slum Dwellers International (SDI) network visited Malawi and had an audience with Blantyre Mayor Chalamanda, he said  40 percent of the city’s population is occupying 70 percent of 228 square kilometres of available land.

“There are a number of reasons that have caused this influx, some of them include [the fact] that there is little seriousness with issues of town planning, people just build their houses anyhow without following city orders.

“Another factor is that migration levels are very high in Blantyre as we have people coming from nearby districts seeking greener pastures and opportunities here.”

However, the mayor said all cities in the world have slums, a fact that cannot be ignored as no matter what, the slums will always be there and somehow the city cannot do without them as they provide housing to the urban poor who cannot afford to live in formal settlements.

Blantyre City Council (BCC) director Costly Chanza said the council has already taken a step towards slum upgrading to bring sanity in some communities around Blantyre.

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wovinidwa Ine

Koma ndaseka bwa, mpaka ma miniti awiri! Misozi yosekesa kugwesa. Adale kundifunsa kuti “oPhiri, kodi chavuta ndichani, olo chosekesa choncho ndichiani?” Ine osayankha, kumangoseka baasi. Mpaka ine kuwasonyeza pa laptop’i kuti awerenge nkhani iyi okha.

Nyani wa ku Mwananyani
Nyani wa ku Mwananyani

Is the title and what is written in the first three paragraphs, a jock or something? A big, big jock?
Just an incredible claim! Mukuyesa ife ndi makape eti ( or you’re taking us for fools?)
FYI: around that time, the turn of the century, I traveled a bit between Malawi and North America (various places). I cannot imagine what is written to be true. Never.
Is this an advance to Fools’ Day, maybe?

Sure, Blantyre was better in many aspects than today. But to claim what is written is plain preposterous. Aaaaaaaaaa!

Abu Dhabi

Do we have a city in Malawi?? Slum-cities kapena?????


Cheapest is the crucial word here. Bt can never be the best city in the world and it was never in 2001. Cheapest in the world, yes and it is possible that it is still the cheapest for outsiders coming with pounds and dollars.

The best city in the word, never.

mexan kulumbasi

thant is very true blantyre was one of the best city we used to call it the greenery city aliyense anali kutenga udindo wosamala dela lomwe akukhala ngakhalenso chikhalidwe zonsezi zimayendera limodzi


nde mwati 15 years??????

2016 welcome

Who did the grading? Laughable. Let’s just work hard in every respect


Years ago mukunenayo kunali anthu angati? Lero mwaswana ka. Tichepetse kubelekana kapena kuti mumvetsetse control kuswana mmanyumbamu amangwetu!

James Tsamwa

Mwati 15 years ago Blantyre was what? and by who? Does anyone apart from a few Africans know about Malawi, let alone Blantyre. Inu, musandiphe ndi phwete ine, kikikikiki.

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