Former energy and mines minister Grain Malunga has been told to stop getting himself involved in Paladin Africa Limited (PAL) – miners at the Kayerekela Uranium Mine – with Karonga communities saying they still feel cheated by the company as far as their social corporate responsibility is concerned.
Malunga who reportedly works with PAL now was in the district to handover a health facility the company has constructed around the mine.
Residents that attended the handover ceremony fumed when district health officer (DHO) Phinous Mfune disclosed that the long awaited USS$70 000 project was not a health centre but a simple clinic.
Mfune said, among others, no maternal services will be offered at the facility meaning residents will still have to cover a 10 kilometre distance to access the services at Wililo Health Centre.
“The facility will be operating as a dispensary, not as a health centre. There will only be treatment for outpatients,” said Mfune.
In his remarks, Malunga said they constructed the facility instead of a health centre due to limited resources.
“Depending on our economy as Paladin, people must understand that there are certain things that we cannot do, and because the mine is not operational right now, we thought of constructing the dispensary,” said Malunga.
He said the money used for the exercise was borrowed from the Langer Heinrich mine in Namibia, a sister mine to Kayerekela.
But Karonga Youth for Justice and Peace (KYJD) Steve Simusokwe, who pioneered protests against PAL in 2012, rubbished Malunga reminding him that he must behave as Malawian and not a foreigner.
According to Simusokwe, the owners of the mine know they have lied to the people of Karonga and cannot face the communities hence they sent Malunga to represent them.
“Malunga should stop this nonsense. He should behave like a Malawian. Next time if he comes for this cheap propaganda he will regret the day he was born,” warned Simusokwe.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :