HRDC Snubs Symon Vuwa Kaunda, new demos In December

Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has turned down the invitation by Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development Symon Vuwa Kaunda to discuss land-related issues saying all they want is the ministry to resolve the matter.

Civil society organisations (CSOs) under HRDC banner Tuesday gave government five days to reverse sale of school land, failing which the CSOs will lead Malawians to a wave of protests.

Timothy Mtambo and Gift Trapence

There have been revelations that Livimbo, Chimutu, New Shire, Chilambula and Magwero have been encroached on by developers in deals that are allegedly dubious.

Minister of Lands Symon Vuwa Kaunda invited HRDC to a roundtable saying he wanted the rights defenders to appreciate what the ministry is doing since the issues of sale of public land came out.

According to the letter of invitation Malawi News has seen, signed by Sosten Chinkonda, Ministry of Lands wants HRDC officials, Ministry of Education officials and the claimant of Livimbo School’s land to meet, go to the site and resolve the issues.

“We would like extend the invitation to you to witness the verification exercise of the boundaries when Surveyor General will be retracing the boundaries of the land for Livimbo School on Monday November 25, you may wish to note that the problem of encroachments on the land for public institutions is so huge and it is therefore my plea that we should work together to arrest the problem.” reads part of the letter.

However, in a separate interview, Vuwa Kaunda disclosed that his ministry has withdrawn documents relating to land in question for further scrutiny at the ministry.

According to the minister, this is to comply with HRDC’s demand.

HRDC press conference yesterday focused on the alleged sale of land in some public schools and push for the resignation of Malawi Electoral Commission Chairperson Justice Jane Ansah among others.

Mtambo warned people that are allegedly plotting to infiltrate and end the grouping that they will not succeed because God will not let it happen.

HRDC has meanwhile endorsed truck drivers’ strike scheduled for November 3 2019.

The coalition has also announced new wave of anti-Jane Ansah demonstrations on December 10.

HRDC has been organising nationwide demonstrations to push for Ansah’s resignation for allegedly mismanaging May 21 Tripartite Elections which Malawi Congress Party and UTM are challenging in court.