Minister warns Malawi chiefs against binge drinking, bribes

Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Kondwani Nankhumwa has warned chiefs in the country to refrain from heavy drinking and corruption saying Government would remove all chiefs who are engaged in such behaviour.

Nankhumwa with the STA Gumba and other traditional leaders pic Sarah Munthali MANA

Nankhumwa with the STA Gumba and other traditional leaders pic Sarah Munthali MANA

Nankhumwa speaking at the function Picture Sarah Munthali

Nankhumwa speaking at the function Picture Sarah Munthali

The Minister was speaking at Gumba in Traditional Authority Mkanda in Mchinji during the installation of Faneli Lemekani as Sub Traditional Authority Gumba.

“In the event that the chief heavily drinks alcohol and in public, the area goes down in terms of development, I am warning all chiefs in Mchinji, because I have heard reports that some chiefs are always drunk, this retards development in the area,” he said.

Nankhumwa also warned the chiefs against receiving bribes from their subjects in return for relief items from organisations and government or to be included in public works programme.

The Minister also cautioned chiefs against removing group and village headmen illegally due to differences, saying only government are mandated to remove chiefs.

“Traditional Authorities do not dethrone village and group village headmen anyhow, if they are wrong they must be disciplined and you must report them to the District Commissioner who can recommend to my ministry whether they should be removed or not,” he said.

The Minister also advised royal families to contact and dialogue when there is need to choose an heir to a throne to avoid chieftaincy wrangles.

“We have several cases in courts because people are fighting for chieftaincy, when a chief dies the royal family should hold discussions and choose a person who will be the heir to the throne to avoid wrangles if they are differences let them resolve their issues amicably,” he stressed.

Nankhumwa also commended the people of Gumba for a choosing a female chief to lead, this ensured that women should also be in leadership positions.

Speaking at the same function, District Commissioner for Mchinji Richard Hara hailed the smooth installation of Gumba citing it as one of rare processes in the district.

“This is a rare chieftaincy in Mchinji because they were no disputes, the name of the new chief was submitted and the whole process has been done without hustles,” he added.

He also said chiefs play a vital role in collaboration with the district council in spearheading development in the district.

The new Sub Traditional Authority Gumba has been installed following the death of her predecessor who died in 2014.

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