Chitipa residents protest against relocation of refugee camp


Chitipa residents have protested against Malawi Government’s plan to relocate refugee camp from Dowa to the area of Traditional Authority Mwenechanya in Chitipa.

According to a petition the residents of Wenya have delivered to Chitipa District Commissioner, they were not consulted on the decision to construct a refugee camp at Mbalezi.

The petition which Malawi24 has seen adds that chiefs, Chitipa council officials and Malawi Government officials ambushed the residents by visiting the refugee camp site recently.

“T/A Mwenechanya cannot impose his personal decisions for his personal benefits on the people of Wenya in particular and the people of Wenya in general,” reads part of the petition.

The residents further argue that their area is not an entry point for refugee into Malawi.

According to the petition, construction of a refugee camp is not a priority for the area because their priorities are Chitipa-Nthalire-Nyika road, decent houses at Chisenga and Wenya Police Units, Ambulance at Chambo Health Centre and hostels at Chisenga CDSS and Nkhumano CDSS.

“We say no to the relocation of the refugee camp to Wenya. No Government official must visit and do anything on our area,” the residents say in the petition.

Minister of Homeland Security Ken Zikhale Ng’oma said last month that the camp is being moved to Chitipa in order to improve security because some of the illegal immigrants are dangerous to the security of the country since they bring guns.

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