Some civil society groups have said they will gang up to see the logical conclusion of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) investigations on how a Malawi Housing Corporation (MHC) land in Area 3 in Lilongwe was sold to two businesspeople, Mustaq Chothia and Suleiman Ismail Karim.
The Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) asked ACB to probe the matter in a letter dated August 5 2020 signed by HRDC chairperson Gift Trapence and national coordinator Luke Tembo.
However, Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiative (CDEDI) executive director Silvester Namiwa and Malawi Watch director Billy Banda said they are closely following the matter.
“We will work with other interested human rights defenders to ensure there is land justice,” said Namiwa.
Nyasa Times understands that Chothia and Karim wrongfully got hold of the Kanjewe deceased estate land in Area 43 and sold to Asians at K150 million each on three plots amounting to K450 million.
The documents seen by Nyasa Times show they were drafted by Mr Chifomboti of Ministry of Lands.
There are also shoddy dealings with plots in Area 9 in Lilongwe namely; 9-89; 9-161 and 9-430.
The ACB is being persuaded to investigate in conjunction with Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) on the development funding and where the town houses were sold and who prepared the valuation report.
The HRDC which were the first to blow the whistle, further alleges that Chothia and Karim were also dubiously awarded land near Kamuzu Central Hospital roundabout, Lilongwe’s Area 15 and Area 3 as well as plots opposite Lilongwe Labour Offices.
“HRDC has also information that there have been many suspected cases by some Ministry of Land officials awarding land without following proper procedures,” said the coalition in their letter.
HRDC further wants a probe on Ministry of Land officials who have sold government land without proper procedures at Choma Hatchery in Mzuzu, Mpemba Staff Development Institute (SDI) land in Blantyre and part of Maula Prison land in Lilongwe’s Area 6.
In addition, some of the government land that has been sold without proper procedures include Ministry of Agriculture’s department of Health land along Chileka Road in Blantyre, Bwemba Hatchery in Lilongwe and Department of Veterinary land in Mpemba, Blantyre.
ACB is being tasked to carry investigations on the reported cases earnestly.
Last week, government redeployed three top senior officials from Lands Department to other ministries in what Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Kezzie Msukwa described as a “clean-up exercise”.
Malawi ranks among African countries with rising cases of ‘land grabbing’ despite the existing land legislations on proper land management, governance and best practices.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :