Malawi housing for security agencies for a long time has been inadequate. This has prompted the Malawian government to launch Malawi Security Agencies’ Houses project under which 10,000 residences will be built for the Malawi Defence Force, Malawi Police Service, and Malawi Prison Service.
The Malawi housing for Security Agencies project began in December 2021 and has been dispersed across the country, with 1,000 residences under construction in the first phase.
Jenda Police Station alone in Mzimba is scheduled to have 100 additional residences, but only ten are now being built in the first phase. Eight of the ten positions are for young officers, while two are for senior officers. The residences will be completed and inhabited by the end of June 2022.
Deus Gumba, Deputy Minister of Lands, stated that President Lazarus Chakwera‘s intention was to ensure that troops and police officers are appropriately housed, adding that he was pleased with the building work being done at Jenda Police Station.
Full Scope of the Malawi housing for Security Agencies’
Gumba mentioned that the objective for Jenda is to build 100 dwellings, but they have only begun with ten in this initial phase. The overall goal is to create 10,000 dwellings, with the first phase consisting of 1,000. This is occurring all around the country.
The Jenda contractor praised the police for providing enough protection. He stated that because the residences are for police personnel, the police themselves provide the utmost protection, and everything is running smoothly. The project is scheduled to be finished in 12 months.
Government to construct 10 000 Malawi housing for Security Agencies
The government of Malawi has announced plans to construct 10 000 security agencies’ houses in five years. Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Joseph Mwanamvekha revealed the plans and said that construction will commence in 2019/20 fiscal year.
Out of the 10 000 houses, Malawi Police Service will get 4000, Malawi Defence Forces (MDF) 4000, and Immigration Department and Malawi prison will each get 1000 houses. Mwanamvekha said that US $345,000 has already been allocated in the 2019/20 budget for preparatory works and designs and the government will issue a long-term financial instrument to raise resources for the project.
Moreover, the Ministry of Lands, Housing, and Urban Development has completed making assessments on the sites that the security agencies earmarked for the construction of the houses, as well as the facilities that the housing units are expected to have.
“Phase one works will see the construction of 4500 houses, of which the Malawi Police Service will get 2898 houses, MDF will get 1422, Malawi Prison and Immigration Department will each get 90 houses. The remaining 5500 housing units will be done in the second phase. Currently, physical and layout plans for the sites to estimate the number of housing units per site and cost implications are underway,” said Ministry of Lands spokesperson Charles Vintulla.
Deplorable conditions of agencies’ houses
Security officers have been facing serious housing problems for a long time. The officers are living in deplorable conditions in small units which are not suitable for them and their big families. The security institutions’ houses, which were built decades ago, have gone for years without maintenance and they keep on deteriorating, especially with hail storms and other harsh weather conditions the country is experiencing year in, year out.
Implementation of Malawi Security Agencies’ Houses begin soon
Construction of the much anticipated 100 houses for Karonga district’s police in Malawi is set to start soon. According to the Minister of Lands, Kenzie Msukwa, the layout plan for the houses is already done by the building department and the ministry is currently procuring building materials, a process that will end in the next four months.
“We already have the design for the houses and the contractor will be identified soon. In the first phase, we are going to have fifteen units. Of the 15 units, three are for senior officers,” The minister said while at Ipyana Mobile Police Service Camp in Karonga a site where the government wants to construct the Police houses.
A commission of inquiry instituted by Karonga district commissioner Paul Kalilombe on clandestine land deals recently implicated three ward councilors including the council’s chairperson Steven Simsokwe and some officials in land fraud.
“I am disappointed to hear that even councilors here are selling land illegally. This government will not tolerate that and will not spare anyone regardless of any party affiliation,” said Msukwa, who was accompanied by his deputy Abida Mia and the ministry’s Principal Secretary Wilson Mollen.
Paramount Chief Kyungu of Karonga and Chitipa thanked the government for the seriousness it is showing in re-constructing the country that had many short-falls from the previous Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) regime.
Kyungu said all security agents need descent houses. He assured the government of traditional authorities’ support towards any project government intends to implement in the area.
Malawi to build 2,500 houses for security personnel
The government of Malawi is committed to starting phase 2 of the construction of 2,500 houses for security personnel to reduce housing challenges. According to Minister of Homeland Security Richard Chimwendo Banda, the government had set five years to construct 10,000 houses for law enforcement agencies, but they are starting with 2,500 houses. “We look at priority areas where the need is dire without looking at the geographical position,” he said.
The minister further added that the government is confident that within five years it will build more than 10,000 houses for Malawi security personnel because the need for housing for the men in uniform is huge.
Lack of proper housing for security personnel
This revelation was in response to Chikwawa Central member of parliament (MP) Salim Bagus who had alluded to the fact that State security personnel surely deserve better accommodation like everyone else. According to him, officers lack access to decent housing, and where it is available, it is in a dilapidated state.
Furthermore, most State security personnel across the country live in rented or dilapidated institutional houses which are more degrading and sometimes inhuman. He, therefore, asked the government to construct houses for police officers and a fence at Nchalo Police Station.
State security institutions include Malawi Defence Force (MDF), Malawi Prison Service, Malawi Police Service, Immigration and citizenship Services. Back in 2019 Lands, Housing, and Urban Development Minister, Symon Vuwa Kaunda, said that the government is committed to building houses for security personnel to ensure improved accommodation standards.
Malawi’s Abida Mia calls for Malawi Security Agencies’ Houses Project Completion
Abida Mia, deputy minister of Lands, Housing, and Urban Development, has expressed satisfaction with the progress of the security institutional housing project now ongoing in Lilongwe’s Areas 30 and 45.
After reviewing the project at the two locations, the deputy minister told Nyasa Times that it was remarkable to see how the initiative helped realize President Lazarus Chakwera’s ambition of providing jobs for youngsters.
According to reports, the Area 30 police housing project alone has created approximately 400 employment for young people.
The Project’s Worthwhile Contribution to Security
Mia, a vibrant politician known as the Lower Shire’s giant, stated that there is now a great requirement for contractors to be constant in guaranteeing that quality is a crucial necessity. Mia, an MP for Chikwawa Mkombedzi, added that while the project was somewhat delayed due to the wet season, it was still making good progress.
Merlyn Yolamu, the deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of administration, stated in her remarks that the housing project would have a favorable influence on security. The police second in command stressed that the security institutional housing project would make a long-held uniform desire for men to reside in an institutional house a reality.
A total of 50 residences for police personnel are being built in Area 30. There are 12 residences for senior workers and 38 houses for juniors. The other project in Area 45 is the construction of 51 residences for Immigration officials. There are 25 residences for senior officials and 26 houses for lower officers.
In conjunction with IM Designs, the worldwide construction company is managing the construction of the residences in both locations. Malawi President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera stated in Parliament last year that he will guarantee that all projects are finished within the time limit specified.
The government announced plans to build 10,000 security residences for security services over five years. Malawi Police Service will receive 4000 houses, Malawi Defence Forces will receive 4000 houses, while Immigration Department and Malawi Prison will each receive 1000 houses.