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Blantyre District Council Revenue Drops by 45%

By Loness Gwazanga

Blantyre, June 9, Mana: District Commissioner for Blantyre, Bennet Nkasala says the council’s revenue has dropped by 45 percent in the wake of coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

Covid-19 has affected us – Nkasala

He made the disclosure on Tuesday when members of the presidential task force on Covid -19 visited the council to appreciate strides made in the district to prevent further spread of the epidemic.

Nkasala, therefore, said the council has since written to the line Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development requesting for a bailout, especially on salaries and leave grants.

“Things are no longer the same; the pandemic has heavily affected revenue generation comparing with the previous months. Before the pandemic, we could generate about K12 million per month but now we only collecting K3 million from fees, levies and other activities,” Nkasala said.

Nkasala added: “Traffic of people seeking various services has also gone down by 50 percent. This is a clear indication that things are not going on well with people, they have also been heavily financially affected too.”

Minister of Labour, Skills and Innovations, Lilian Patel commended the district for being proactive and working tirelessly to contain the disease despite facing unfavourable conditions.

Patel said the pandemic has affected all sectors including the country’s economy; hence, the need for extra efforts to curb the spread of the disease so that things get back to normal.

“The disease came from nowhere but as a district you have done well and I am impressed. What you need to do now is to ensure monitoring if the measures put in place to avoid further spread are being followed in both the informal and formal sector,” said Patel.

Patel, therefore, urged the council to work closely with community structures so that the fight against the pandemic is successfully won.

So far, Blantyre has a total of 64 registered cases with 46 active, 18 recoveries and one death, according to the Director of Health and Social Services for the district, Dr. Gift Kawalazira.

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