Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Kezzie Msukwa and his deputy Abida Mia have said they are “clearing the rubble” at the ministry, saying the deployment of three senior officials from the ministry to other ministries is part of that.
Chief Secretary to government, Zangazanga Chikhosi, on Thursday issued a transfer memo which indicated that Commissioner for Lands Killian Palika and his deputy Mohamed Selemani have been moved to Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health respectively.
The memo also indicated that Lands registrar Apendezi Kachiwala has been deployed to Ministry of Local Government.
Reacting to the transfers, Minister of Lands Msukwa said it was a “clean up exercise.”
He said: “This is a cleanup exercise at the ministry which has been rotten for long under the watch of the managers.
“I need to bring in new management that is ready to work with us for the better of the country.”
The ministry has been infested with corruption, abuse of office and maladministration.
Some of the concerns from the general public have been that foreign nationals own more land than indigenous Malawians.
The ministry has also been accused of making land expensive to average Malawians, thereby giving an advantage to foreigners to buy the land as they have money.
There was also a parallel ‘Lands Office’ in Lilongwe which transacted and sold plots with counterfeit documents.
But Msukwa said he wants to “create professionalism” in the ministry.
The minister said: “The cleanup will also go down to the bottom to get rid of those that have not been working professionally.”
Deputy minister Abida Mia in a separate interview said she is working tirelessly with her boss to improve issues of land governance.
“I have discovered a lot of mess in distribution and allocation of plots,” said Mia who had a familiarisation tour in Zomba.
Issues of land scams are not new in Malawi as many people, including Cabinet ministers and high-ranking government officials have previously been duped.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :