Urbanization block relocation of Soche hill residents

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In an attempt to bring back the beauty of Soche hill, Blantyre City Council (BCC) announced plans to relocate encroachers but the council’s effort seems to have hit the wall as the number of encroachers continues to grow.

In 2014, a magistrate court in Blantyre ordered that 64 families who encroached into Soche Hill should be moved.

Anthony Kasunda

Kasunda says council’s plan failed because more families moved to the hill.

Magistrate Jean Rosemary Kayira ruled that the families were to be moved within six months but three years down the line people still live at Soche Hill.

BCC has attributed the failure to have the people moved to urbanization in the city of Blantyre.

In an interview with Malawi24, BCC spokesperson Anthony Kasunda said the council’s plan failed because more families moved to the hill.

“By the time the council had wanted to move out encroachers, there were only about 64 households. During the period the injunction case was in court, the number rose to over 3000. However, the court ruled that the court had an obligation over the initial 64 families.

“Out of consideration, the council offered to allocate plots to all the families at that time who wished to relocate to South Lunzu. Many households moved out of Soche but due to high rate of urbanization, there are still more people coming into the city and settling in illegal places such as Soche Hill,” said Kasunda.

Soche Hill is among the hills in the country that have been destroyed by human activities.

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