Chiefs have pleaded with government not to abandon construction of the Nsanje World Inland Port initiated by late President Bingu wa Mutharika.

Speaking on behalf of other traditional leaders, Senior Chief Malemia, said the project will not only benefit Malawians but also people of other countries hence the need to continue with it.

The senior chief spoke after the Minister of Information Moses Kunkuyu briefed chiefs and church Leaders in the district on an economic recovery plan being pursued by government where it was noted that the port was not a priority.

Commissioned on October 23, 2010, the inland port was expected to reduce transportation cost by 60 percent by linking Malawi to the Indian Ocean via the Shire and Zambezi rivers.

Senior Chief Malemia urged government to include the project in its developmental programs.The senior chief was, however, quick to say that government should prioritise rehabilitation of a railway line from Limbe in the commercial capital Blantyre to Nsanje as well as constructing a bridge at Mtayamoyo.

The traditional leader said people in the district are suffering a lot owing to the absence of such facilities.

The government spokesperson assured the concerned local leaders that the railway line will be rehabilitated, and that a contractor from Japan will soon start the construction of a bridge at Mtayamoyo.

On the Nsanje port, Mr Kunkuyu said much as the port is equally important, government will first implement projects that are priorities.

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