President Peter Mutharika Tuesday promised Malawians that he would do all the best to ensure that there is a change in the management of the country’s land.
Mutharika was speaking at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe where he had an audience with leaders of various Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and Traditional Leaders led by LandNet Malawi.
The President said they have come at the right time when parliament just passed Bill No. 2 of 2016 – Land Bill; Bill No. 3 of 2016 – Physical Planning; Bill No. 6 of 2016 – Land Survey; and Bill No. 9 of 2016 – Customary Land.
He said the Bills are now with him, but he has not yet assented to them and that their request to meet him was timely.
The Malawi leader said the meeting was called by the LandNet organization, representing 43 CSOs, individuals, academia, land and natural resources, private consultancy, traditional leaders and legal experts.
He said he knew LandNet since 1990s and it used to be called Civil Societies on Land, Natural Resources.
“I have followed with keen interest your contributions on land and natural resources management and related processes. I have also followed your active engagements with various stakeholders including previous governments.
“My government is about delivering results and our promises; our elections manifesto was very clear, we are here to transform this country and transforming it now,” said Mutharika.
He said during his campaign he promised Malawians that his government will strengthen the legal and institutional framework for the effective management of the country’s natural resources and environment.
“In my state of national address for 2016/17, I specifically mentioned that we will take to parliament all land related bills and we did, 11 bills were ready for debate and passed in the last sitting of parliament,” he said.
On the issue of land reforms, Mutharika said it has been discussed since 1995 and he remember when he was involved in with others in the drafting of the constitution in 1995, land was credible matter that needed urgent review and attention.
He said today more than 20 years later, there is no movement on that urgent matter; the country cannot keep going in circles if we want to move forward as a country, and we have no choice but progress forward.
The delegation among others appealed to the president to assent to the recent passed land bills saying registration will enhance order in the administration of land in the country.
Board Chairperson for the LandNet, Steven Nathambwe applauded the president personally and his government for the political will demonstrated in the passing of the land bills.
He noted that the president considered land issues to be central to the social and economic development of the country and that LandNet shares his brief as the bills awaits to be assented by the president.
Nathambwe said some quarters of the society were expressing their observations on the registration saying there have not been enough consultations on the land bills.
However, the delegation is in support of the bills saying that they will enhance order in the administration of the land such as land allocation.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :