Residents around the proposed site for Kanyika Niobium Mine in Mzimba should not expect any special treatment as they will be incorporated in the national compensation programmes, government has said.
About 248 households at Kanyika in Mzimba District, whose livelihoods were affected by relocation plans to pave the way for Kanyika mining activities have been demanding compensation from government.
In July this year, civil society organisations asked government to provide interim relief to the families as one way of easing problems they have been facing over the past three years.
But speaking in an interview on Tuesday, Mzimba district commissioner Thomas Chirwa said the Kanyika situation is not being treated as an isolated case and government decided to incorporate the victims in the assessment the Malawi Vulnerability Assessment Committee (Mvac) made.
He said Kanyika residents will benefit from the K1.2 billion relief package allocated to Mzimba District to support 226 398 people facing food shortage. The K1.2 billion relief will run from October 2015 to March 2016, but some households will receive money as they preferred to be given cash instead of food handouts.
Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) diocesan secretary for Mzuzu, Arnold Msimuko, said Kanyika people needed urgent attention, noting that they have suffered for a longtime.
Kanyika Mine Native forum chairperson John Nkhata said the families have decided to sue government for disrupting their lives and failing to provide relief and compensation.