Mzuzu City Council chief executive officer McCloud Kadammanja has said the council requires K20 million to renovate the mayor’s house, but some insiders feel the amount is enough to build a new house.
Re-elected mayor William Mkandawire has been living in his personal house since 2014 because the official residence was being occupied by businessperson Big Joe Nyirongo.
Nyirongo occupied the house in Kaning’ina after the council sold him a house which was later repossessed by its original owner following a lengthy court battle.
Kadammanja said the council has finally handed Nyirongo the K8 million payout he demanded as a final settlement for the loss.
However, the city chief said the council will have to spend more because the house is in a mess.
“We have two options. It is up to us to decide if we should spend K20 milion on renovations or demolish the house and build another one,” said Kadammanja.
But some councillors feel K20 million is higher than the actual costs of renovations.
Mzuzu City legislator Leonard Njikho said it does not make sense to spend the sum to renovate a house that was habitable just a few months ago.
“We have to send a team to check the state of the house. That money is enough to build a new one,” he said.
DPP councillor Yona Mkandawire said there is need to halt the proposed renovations because it could be a ploy to defraud the council. n