Malawi: Ministry to Discipline Mzuzu Councilors for Vandalized CEO's Office

Mzuzu — Ministry of Local Government says an appropriate action will be taken against Mzuzu City Council (MCC) councilors who vandalized the council's chief executive officer's office in reaction to delayed K1.5 million motorbike loan.

The councilors, who primarily exist to foster development, vandalized the office on Friday December 06, 2019, to force the council pay them a balance of K1 million out of K1.5 million motorbike loan each of them is entitled to.

However, the fracas countered development for the council which is already struggling financially to the extent that this year it failed to pay its workers for about three months.

One week after the incident, MCC spokesperson, Mac Donald Gondwe told Mana that the council had not taken any action on the councilors but had reported the matter to Ministry of Local Government.

He said the council's operations were crippled as operations on the vandalism day came to halt due to tense atmosphere the councilors brought at the premises.

He said since the offices were closed by the councilors, staff could not go to collect market fees as everybody was in fear of what could happen next, and that people were denied services from the council.

"Revenue collection eventually dropped by 20 percent and to fix the CEO's office door it cost K200 000. Further people were denied services from our office as they were closed.

"We could not process fuel on this day hence failed to use our vehicles to pick up litter around the city. All these because the loan issue was not resolved amicably," Gondwe said.

Local Government Ministry's spokesperson, Muhlabase Mughogho confirmed to have received report from MCC on the matter and that it was being looked into.

"We wish to say that what the councilors did is not allowed and action will be taken according to law," said Mughogho.

Vice Mayor for MCC, Gift Desire Nyirenda said he was away when the incident took place.

He said a meeting with fellow councilors on the matter was scheduled to take place on Monday December 16, 2019, and that he would share the outcome.

Mzuzu City has eleven councilors and it is not yet clear as to how many were involved in the fracas.

The councilors were since given their balance, which the council said delayed due to a technical hiccup, the same day they went violent.

Some sources told Mana that before going violent, the councilors were seen drinking beer at the council premises.

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