Thyolo District Council Chairperson Amosi Bakiri says raising awareness on the new Customary Land Act will help to reduce land disputes that were high in the District.

The Chair told Malawi News Agency in an interview on Tuesday after a one day workshop organized by Landnet.

He said most of the disputes including encroaching of estates were a result of ignorance by communities. Hence massive civic education is needed in the district.

“The new customary land act which attracted a lot negative comments from people , mandates individuals to register their land for free and it also provides opportunities to an individual to own land regardless of gender, said Bakiri.

He therefore said it was important to enlighten people on the new law before its implementation so that they understand it.

He added; “Here in Thyolo I believe our chief’s tribunals will no longer get flooded with land disputes as people will be in a better position to understand what the law says.

“I would therefore like to urge Landnet to engage all community leaders in the district so that in the long run every community member will understand what then new law stipulates.”

Traditional Authority Mchiramwela said the Customary Land Act has come in a bit late as most of the land in the district was occupied by estates.

However he pointed out that the new law will assist people to register their land for free without difficulties.

“I will encourage my subjects to go and register their land once the law becomes in full operational so that they should not fear of losing their land once something happens,” he said.

Landnet Land Governance Project Officer McDonald Galimoto said a lot of Malawians were not aware on the issues regarding the new law.

He then said Landnet decided to engage civil servants from various departments, traditional leaders and other local leaders so that they take the massage on what the law stipulates to the local masses.

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