District Commissioner for Mulanje Jack Ngulube has sought government’s intervention after the governing PP demanded dominance in village development committees and area development committees.
Ngulube reportedly suspended the public works programme after the PP demands.
In Phalombe, PP and former governing party, DPP, fought last week after DPP protested PP’s dominance in rural growth centre committees.
Police intervened and arrested some people.
In the Mulanje case, Ngulube was queried by PP Southern Region governor Ali Mbalaka why DPP members were still in the committees.
Ngulube has referred the matter to the Ministry of Local Government.
But Minister of Local Government Grace Maseko said the programme has been suspended nationwide to deal with some operational issues.
Referring to the Mulanje case, Maseko said PP has no mandate to issue directives to the DC on who should be in the committees.
Maseko said the issues government wants to resolve include funding as government is moving money from the central government to district councils. She said government also wants to sensitise local government finance committees on how to use the money.
But Mbalaka said PP, being the governing party, deserves to be in control of the committees. “We are a ruling party and we must be in control of these committees. The DPP knows the truth, only that it is now painful that they are in the opposite side,” he said.
In Chitekesa Village, T/A Jenela in Phalombe, the elections of 10 committees to head Chitekesa Rural Growth Centre were disrupted after DPP district governor Reuben Makata led members of his party to protest the inclusion of more PP members in the committee.
Phalombe Police Station spokesperson Augustine Nkhwazi said a fight broke out between PP and DPP supporters on Tuesday last week and police had to intervene and arrest some people.
He said police arrested Makata, Daniel Nantapo, who is DPP area chairman, and a Silika from PP. Nkhwazi said the three were charged with an offence of fighting at a public place.