Paramount Chief Kyungu, government and civil society organisations (CSOs) have called for sanity in Karonga District, noting that divisions among traders and villagers have a potential to paralyse development in the district.
The trio made the appeal during the launch of Karonga Community Development Trust (KCDT) on Tuesday.
The trust was established to boost all categories of businesses in the district by ensuring coordinated efforts in dealing with big investors in the district.
Karonga is one of the districts heavily affected by conflicts. Oftentimes, the district experiences bloodshed, arson and other violent cases because of power and land wrangles.
The conflicts have not spared the business community as some traders refuse to recognise the trust and have formed the Karonga Business Coalition.
Kyungu said the divisions among traders and villages make him sick. He said the fights paint a bad picture of the district and also sends a bad signal to the younger generation.
Kyungu said he will not live to see his own people fight. He said if people have issues, they should confront him and he urged the traders to resolve their differences.
Karonga district commissioner Rosemary Moyo said it is only unity that will help the trust achieve its goals.
Natural Resources Justice Network chairperson Kossam Munthali said foreign investors take advantage of divisions among the communities to exploit them. He said there is no unity among the traders and if the divisions continue, exploitation will continue.
KCDT chairperson Mclean Sikumbawa said the trust will unite traders to engage investors with one voice. He said the other group will have to be sensitised to the aims of the trust, arguing ignorance is the cause of tension. He said the trust is also to their benefit.