Chibanja Ward’s leadership future in Mzuzu is uncertain following the missing of its councilor, Charles Mlogera, who police say went on the run hours before the judgment of his case of abducting and defiling three minors.
Councillor Mlogera is nowhere to be seen since April, this year (2018). Therefore, the ward is likely to have no working councilor until the police locate him and the court process is completed.
Northern Region Police deputy publicist, Maurice Chapola, said in an interview Thursday the hunt for Mlogera is still underway and that they have now involved Interpol in the search.
“The court will be taking the sureties of this case to court to determine the fate of Mlogera on 4th June, 2018,” Chapola said.
Asked whether the ward seat would be declared vacant, Mzuzu City Council chief executive officer, Mcloud Kadam’manja said they have no idea that the councilor is missing.
“As a council, we don’t have information that the councilor for the area is missing so the issue of declaring the ward vacant does not arise,” Kadam’manja said.
Asked whether the councilor is attending council meetings, Kadam’manja referred the question to Mlogera himself who currently cannot be reached.
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) spokesperson Sangwani Mwafulirwa said the seat is not yet vacant and the incumbent is still holding it.
“The due process of the law has to be followed. MEC will wait until all the court issues are conducted and then will advise on the way forward,” Mwafulirwa said.
Malawi has about a year to hold tripartite elections when new ward councilors would be elected; therefore, Chibanja Ward may not have a working councilor for close to a year if he is not located.