NGOs ask govt to upgrade Karonga to Municipality

The Council for Non Governmental Organizations in Malawi (Congoma) is lobbying government to make Karonga a Municipality saying the unprecedented economic growth and developments the district is experiencing should not be ignored.

Members of Congoma led by Vice Chair Kossam Munthali made their call during a meeting with Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Grace Maseko held in Karonga recently.

Munthali said the fact that government at one point made Karonga a Town Assembly, but reverted in to District Council was an indication that it was unsure of the correct status befitting it.

Karonga airport

The NGOs also asked government to support construction of the Karonga Stadium Project which they said is in the pipeline.

Lastly, the NGOs requested the Minister to push Paladin Africa, the operators of Kayelekera Uranium Mine to push for the implementation of  the Corporate Social Agreement (CSR) saying “It’s high time people in these areas benefited as Paladin is doing in Australia”

Last month the Network for Youths Activists made a similar demand Paladin asking them to honour the memorandum of understanding they signed with the Malawi government by implementing some of the social responsibilities they pledged.

“We also wish to remind government that the MoU was instrumental in breaking the deadlock surrounding the commencement of the project. Therefore strict adherence to the MoU and commitment from all concerned parties, especially government and Paladin relative to the benefits of the surrounding communities is paramount,” the Activists said in a statement.

There has been no official comment from Paladin as most top bosses could not be reached.

On top of that they said government should make the MoU public suggesting that it should be published in the media for public access.

“We wish the nation was told how much Paladin company generates from the mining and the share that goes into the government account. And most importantly indicating how much revenues have been collected by government from the Mining Project since its commencement,” they said.

The statement has been signed by Charles Kajoloweka of Evergreen Centre for Development, Joseph Chirwa of Mardines Foundation (MARFON), Peter Mumba of Mzuzu Youth Networking Committee, Focus Muyanga of Foundation For Sustainable Social Development, Juliet Chirwa of Centre for Girls Interaction (CEGI), Charles Mlogela of St Johns HIV and AIDS Organisation and Tega Mwaruwasa of Mzuzu Young Politicians Union

“The government should make the MoU public. We are of the view that the MoU should be published in the Media for public access.

Lastly they suggested for the construction of Kayerekera University saying “We are convinced that the project can generate enough resources for the project”

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