Daggers have been drawn between Kanengo Northgate Project and a number of villages under Traditional Authority (T/A) Chitukula in Lilongwe over a vast piece of land, which the project claims ownership.
On May 20 this year, GM Properties Limited obtained a court order stopping families from Kuliyani and Mwambakanthu Village from developing their land, yet, as Nyasa Times has reliably informed and established, the company failed to settle compensations for the setters at the start of the project.
Interestingly, the order is coming amidst investigations law enforcement agencies launched around July 2020 against Asian businessperson Azhar Chaudhry together with security aide to former President Peter Mutharika over the same Kanengo Northgate Project.
The investigations followed revelations that the over 100 hectares of land on which the project sits was acquired dubiously.
Kanengo Northgate Project was modelled along the line of Beverly Hills and was launched in 2005 with the intention of building 1, 800 modern executive houses and a business complex as well as a golf course.
However, the project never took off and only one building was constructed on the land and ended up in total abuse of the land.
Village Head Kuliyani described the tactics GM Properties Limited is using to displace them as a big joke. He vowed that he and his subjects are not moving an inch from their ancestral land until GM Properties Limited compensates them.
“We know that this is a ploy by the company to cow us into giving up our land for free. But I wish to assure them that we are going nowhere! Let them give us the money, and then we will move out. Without that, I swear by my late grandparents that we are not moving an inch on this land because Kanengo Northgate Project did not compensate us,” he vowed.
A senior official in the Ministry of Lands, Sarah Mwakikunga, corroborated this account saying “the government is looking for funding to compensate the locals.”
Mwakikunga said Kuliyani and Mwambakanthu Villages were designated for an industrial park under the Malawi Investment Trade Centre (MITC).
“The donor who will finance this project has already been identified and we expect that we will soon be engaging the locals on the development. But I must say that those who will choose to stay, the ministry will regularize their land and they will be given title deeds,” she explained.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :