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COVID-19 stalls land law talks in Mzimba

By Kelvin Tembo 

The Covid 19 pandemic is delaying discussions between the government and chiefs in Mzimba district on the new land laws.

Parliament passed the land laws five years ago, comprising 10 land-related Acts.

These are the Land Act, Customary Land Act, Land Survey Act, Physical Planning Act, and Registered Land Act, all of 2016.

But Minister of Lands Kezzie Msukwa points out that gatherings to popularise such laws cannot take place due to Covid 19 restrictions

The objective behind the new land laws is to ensure a well secure land tenure system in the country, which will propel socio economic development at all levels.

However, chiefs in Mzimba district are reluctant to accept the laws particularly the Customary Land Act as they believe it will strip them of their powers over customary land.

As part of the implementation plan which was developed in 2018, the ministry has been discussing with chiefs in the district so that once the national implementation starts the law should be accepted by all.

“We will continue engaging the chiefs when the Covid 19 situation improves,” Msukwa said.

In 2018, the Ministry of Lands developed an implementation plan which recommended undertaking pilots first before the national roll out and the ministry took the pilot approach.

Msukwa has told Capital FM that through the pilot phase they have discovered some gaps which need a review process during the June sitting of parliament.

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