Lilongwe is said to be the fastest growing city in the country, as a majority of people flock to the city in search of economic opportunities, a situation which has resulted in poor service delivery in the city.
Action Aid Malawi Women Rights Manager for Central Region, Chikumbutso Ngosi Ndaferankhande, disclosed this during an interface meeting between the Lilongwe urban settlers and the service providers.
She urged the city council and service providers to strengthen collaboration to improve on service delivery in the city.
Ndaferankhande stressed the need for joint action to eradicate poverty, control the population and rapid urbanisation growth in the city.
“We have organised this interface meeting to discuss the research findings of a study we conducted to assess capacity preparedness on the rapid urbanisation growth in Lilongwe,’’ Ndaferankhande said.
She explained that the rapid population increase in the city brings challenges to women and girls such as insecurity and water shortages among others.
“There is need for council’s capacity to design and implement sustainable programmes to improve the city’s image as a capital,’’ said Ndaferankhande.
She observed that the city is not well prepared for migrating population resulting in more urban migrants ending poorer than the rural.
“The research findings show that development of unplanned settlements such as roads, water, electricity, security and garbage collection are not planned before hand,’’ she said.
Ndaferankhande revealed that Malawi has a population of 18,570,321 and that the population growth rate is at 3.32 percent, 51 percent being women.
She said 42 percent of the townships are totally dissatisfied with electricity services and that connection fees are high for the urban poor.
“It is important to ensure that we get the voice of the poor themselves to balance the equation of human rights to ensure that the rights holders are there to hold duty bearers accountable,’’ she said.
Member of Lilongwe Urban Poor Peoples Network, Lemon Kawale, bemoaned the tendency of some service providers in the city.
A vibrant writer who gives a great insight on hot topics and issues