District Commissioner for Karonga, Emmanuel Bulukutu has said the Council would need over K500 million for maintenance of its offices and purchase of new office equipment that got damaged by fire last week during anti Jane Ansah demonstrations.
The DC who is now operating from Karonga District Fisheries office told journalists on Tuesday in Karonga that most of public officers have been heavily affected by the incident saying some have no offices to operate from.
“We have lost almost everything. All our office equipment got damaged completely while some equipment such as computers, motorcycles were stolen by the alleged demonstrators.
“This is total disaster and we do not even know where to start from. We have done our initial assessment, but we will also wait for our colleagues from our headquarters for further assessment,” Bulukutu explained.
The DC said though some officers have been allocated space in Council’s old offices it would take time for each and every department to get settled and operate properly.
He urged well-wishers to assist the Council with office equipment so that it can continue providing services to the citizenry.
Karonga Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) Network have distanced themselves from the demonstrations saying people were at liberty to support the demonstrations if they saw it fit to do so.
Interim Secretary for Karonga CSO’ Network, Christobel Munthali said in a separate interview that as network they entirely supported the idea of conducting peaceful demonstrations as a way of letting people express their feelings.
She was quick to condemn the violent acts which marred the so called peaceful demonstrations.
“To demonstrate peacefully as a way of expressing one’s feelings is a right and we call on all members of Karonga community to refrain from indulging in violent acts during peaceful demonstrations,” Munthali said.
The demonstrations which aimed at forcing Chairperson of Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), Dr. Jane Ansah and organised by Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) went ugly despite the pledge by HRDC that the demonstrations would be peaceful.