Mpinganjira controlling Mulanje? DC’s letter sends shivers

Minister Water Development Brown James  (BJ) Mpinganjira has downplayed reports that he has asked the office of the District Commissioner (DC) in Mulanje to inform and seek his permission first before allowing any activity to take place in Mulanje Central Constituency.

According to a letter in possession of Nyasa Times dated August 15th, 2013 written by Mulanje DC J.A.K Nguluwe addressed to all Sector Heads, all Departmental Heads and all Directors in Mulanje, it says no any activity be undertaken in Mulanje Central Constituency without the knowledge of Mpinganjira.

“I wish to strongly advise you all that any activity that you intend to implement in Mulanje Central Constituency should be known at all cost to the Minister of Irrigation and Water Development Honorable Brown .J. Mpinganjira,” reads the letter in part.

“It is imperative to inform him in advance and not in the course of, or after implementation,” adds the statement.

Mpinganjira: Mulanje strongman
Mpinganjira: Mulanje strongman

The letter also warns any individual who will not abide by the laws that the DC’s office will not rally behind that particular individual.

“Please take heed that the District Commissioner will no longer shield any member of staff who ignores deliberately this strong advice.”

The letter which is entitled “activities to be undertaken in Mulanje Central Constituency” has caused fears among government workers in the Mulanje District particularly those from the DC office.

“We are not comfortable with the directive,” said one of the concerned parties.

But Mpinganjira said he was entitled as a political leader in the district who is in government, to know developments taking place.

“I don’t have any authority to direct on anything happening at the DC’s office but what I did was to ask him to notify me of any developments happening in the constituency,” Mpinganjira told Nyasa Times in a Telephone Interview.

“I can also not control any government function but I have the powers in my ministry,” he said.

Mpinganjira is a former Member of Parliament for Mulanje Central and is hoping to reclaim his seat currently being held by Kondwani Nankhumwa of opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

Reports say Damson Chelewani of ruling PP  has entered the  race  but resolved to run as independent candidate following the endorsement of Mpinganjira as PP parliamentary candidate for the area without giving the constituents chance to elect candidate of their choice through primary elections.

Chelewani and Mpinganjira will also face Ruth Lemani of United Democratic Front (UDF).

Mpinganjira’s endorsement by President Joyce Banda also forced Ephraim Chivundi, a senior of the ruling PP, to rescind his decision to run for the seat.

Chelewani  is said to be sponsored by State Vice-President Khumbo Kachali to destabilize Mpinganjira, but he has since refuted the claims.

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