Communities surrounding Ilomba Granite Mine at Mbirima in Traditional Authority (T/A) Mwaulambya in Chitipa are refusing to allow operations at the mine unless their demands are met.
Group village head Mwenembirima said this recently during a meeting between the community and the investor.
“Since the opening of the mine, we have not seen any contribution,” he said.
The communities are demanding five boreholes, electricity, a health clinic, a gravel led two-kilometre road from Ilomba to Mbirima, a teacher’s house and a classroom block each for Ilomba and Kaoma primary schools.
Natural Resources Justice Network chairperson Cossam Munthali defended the people’s quest to demand benefits from the mine.
“It is shocking that since 1995 there is nothing tangible to show here. This community has set a standard which will have an impact on mining companies in Malawi who exploit our land without people benefitting,” he said.
The mine, operated by Chinese investors, was licensed to a Malawian Faisal Khalid Hassan.
It was temporarily closed on October 28 this year after the community seized a truckload of soda light granite minerals headed for exporting.
In reaction, Hassan said his economic rights are being violated.
However, he said he will discuss with his business partners on how they can meet the community’s demands.
Regional Mining engineer (North) George Maneya said Ilomba Granite Mining Company Limited was issued licence number ML0019/95 on June 28 1995 and it will expire on June 28 2020.