People of Paramount Chief Kyungu in Karonga District are demanding compensation from government for their land used for the construction of the K300 million dyke along North Rukuru River in the district.
Speaking on Thursday at a meeting between Karonga District Council officials and concerned community members, group village head Mweniyumba said 42 households were forced to leave their land to pave the way for the construction of the dyke.
He said: “At first, we mutually agreed that we were not going to be compensated.
“But now, having looked at the impact, we feel we were cheated because people moved out of their farming places with nothing to start life with.
One of the affected people, Yohane Mboma from Mwawati Mwanyongo Village, said he needs resources to buy a piece of land to construct a new house.
He said: “Having moved from our ancestral settlements, we are failing to construct new houses due to lack of resources.
“Land and building materials are expensive. Again, we lost our gardens and we did not grow crops this year.”
However, the team that was led by the council’s director of administration Dominic Mwandira said they would brief the district commissioner Paul Kalilombe for further action.
In a separate interview, Kalilombe said the project was implemented on the understanding that traditional leaders would talk to their subjects that there would be no compensation due to the urgency of the dyke.
“On that one, we need more clarity and information because it is the traditional leaders themselves that approached the council on the project to save the situation. However, we will report this to the Office of President and Cabinet for action,” he said.