City council warns Lilongwe land grabbers

Lilongwe City Council chief executive officer John Chome has warned encroachers on Central Poultry land in Area 36 to vacate or face the law.

The people, who claim to be traders at Phwetekere and Mwenyekondo markets in Area 36 in Lilongwe, on Sunday and yesterday shared among themselves a piece of land sitting next to the company’s head office.

Speaking in an interview, Chome said those grabbing or buying disputed land are wasting their time and money.

“As a council, we are moving in to redress the issue. There is no need for engagement because the people already know that they are breaking the law, so we will just have to enforce the law,” he said.

Some people interviewed by The Nation claimed the encroachment was sanctioned by traditional leaders of the area and chairpersons of the two markets.

However, village head  Phwetekere distanced himself from the allegations saying he already warned the people against the action.

He said he is aware of the need for a market in the area and he officially wrote the city council last year requesting for land.

Phwetekere Market chairperson Noel Banda said he was not involved in the encroachment  because he knows that it is illegal to grab land.

So far, some of the encroachers have started selling their portions at prices ranging from K50 000 to K100 000.

Central Poultry management yesterday said it is aware of the incident and already reported the matter to the Lilongwe City Council for redress because they have title deeds for the land.

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