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Saturday, April 20, 2024

BARBARIC: Lilongwe City Council slashes maize in ‘illegal’ fields  

Lilongwe City Council (LCC) authorities have come under fire for slashing maize crops planted in prohibited places within the city.

Enforcement Division Unit for the council conducted the maize crop slashing exercise on Tuesday and Wednesday.

A snap check by Malawi Voice at one of the maize fields we found farmers with their faces cast down with sympathizers describing the move as “barbaric”.

Reacting to the development, a cross section of Malawians on social media platforms such as Facebook and Whatsapp described the maize slashing exercise by the Lilongwe City Council as “witchcraft and inhuman”.

One of the social media users, Rodrick Phillipo said: “This is stupidity! Inde the idea is to have the individuals feel the pinch so that they never repeat the act, but the slashing of a matured crop is not at all a brilliant idea.”

Another comment on LCC facebook page by Willan Kumwenda reads: “But why did all parties wait all long to this devastating moment? That’s almost killing someone much as we understand they have been stubborn”.

Amos Qanda commented: “The timing is wrong. You should have done this at an early stage when the land had just been cultivated. You can’t wait till the crop has reached this stage to take your action.”

According to Council’s Enforcement Division, Officer- In Charge Inspector Allan Domingo, his team slashed over 10 maize fields planted against the Provision of Physical Planning Act of 2018.

The Provision stipulates that “it is illegal to use undeveloped plots, open spaces and road reserves as agricultural gardens for cultivation of various crops including maize within the City of Lilongwe.”

Meanwhile, LCC has appealed to the public to comply with Lilongwe City Council’s bylaws to avoid any inconveniences.

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