The Minister of Civic Education and Nation Unity, Timothy Pagonachi Mtambo has called upon chiefs in the country to keep sensitizing their subjects to desist from mob justice practices in order to strengthen peace and unity in their communities.
Speaking during a series visits to the northern region districts Mtambo said it is high time tradition leaders took full responsibility in promoting peace and unity by among others encourage their subjects to seek justice from law enforcing agencies whenever there is disagreement among them.
Speaking Karonga chiefs, Mtambo said traditional leaders have a critical role to play in ensuring people to desist in taking laws in their hands for tranquility of their communities and this country. “As leaders you need to preach peace in all the times and encourage your subjects to seek legal redress whenever there is a problem other than indulging in mob justice practices,” said the Minister.
In responding to the peace call, the Paramount Kyungu commended government to instituting a special Ministry on peace issues and promised chiefs allegiance towards the ministry’s activities. “As chiefs here we will ensure that peace and unity exist in our areas. We will continue sensitizing our people not to indulge violence acts and practice mob justice as this will bring chaos in the country,” promised Kyungu.
Taking the same message to Nkhataby, Hon. Minister Mtambo called upon chiefs in the district to utilize all existing peace structures for the work of unity to co-exist. He admitted that it is not only chiefs in the district who have the capability of maintaining peace and unity saying government and other stakeholders intervention is also needed. "The government feels sorry when it sees Malawians killing each other. As government we are trying to promote mediations mechanism and strengthen the enforcement by among other facilitating the establishment of Malawi National Peace Commission which will help to look at issues of peace and unity in all districts and deal with them diligently," He said.
Mtambo also added that as another means of building resilient minds on peace, his ministry will institute the dialogue platform known as Pa bwalo where Malawians will freely discuss issues of national importance and this will assist the to avert from unnecessary violent tensions. District commissioner for Nkhata Bay Rodney Simwaka said as a district council they are trying their best to work hand in hand with different chiefs to reduce different acts of violence's in the district. "The council has a peace committee which works with various agents of peace building including the chiefs, to remind them that they are pillars of the people and need to play a critical role in bringing peace and unity in their communities," Simwaka said.
Commenting on the same, Senior Chief Fukamapili attributed lack of jobs in the district as a recipe of conflicts but he was quick to add as traditional leaders will keep on preaching the importance of peace and unity among their subjects. "Besides that many people are jobless here in Nkhatabay ths does not warrant them to engage in conflicts and take laws in their hands,” sad Fukamapili who added by appealing to various stakeholders to introduce various life skills among the youth for them to be busy rather than planning to commit different violence.
In the recent past Nkhata Bay district has seen ugly spates of violence that have left 52 households homeless with their fishing gear torched and destroyed by a neighbouring village in Traditional Authority Fukamalaza.