There has been a shake-up at the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development as well as the Immigration Department where scores of civil servants have been transferred over a six-week period.
At the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, 23 officials are on transfer while over 60 officers have been moved around at the Department of Immigration.
The development at Immigration follows a declaration by chief immigration officer Masauko Medi when he appeared before Parliament that corruption is rampant at his department and that several officers were facing criminal charges.
However, the Immigration Department has played down the transfers, saying they were normal.
Transfers have been effected across the department’s border posts, head office and parent ministry, Home Affairs and Internal Security.
Department of Immigration spokesperson Joseph Chauwa confirmed the transfers, but described them as a normal shake-up.
He said: “Even myself, I was transferred from Mchinji border to the head office.”
He also confirmed that the transfers have extended to the Ministry of Home Affairs and Internal Security’s department at the One Stop Investment Centre to the head office in Blantyre and between regional offices.
The Immigration Department has around 700 employees spread across the head office, regional offices in Lilongwe, Blantyre and Mzuzu.
At the Ministry for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, 23 officers have been transferred between its headquarters and regional offices in the North, Centre and South.
However, most of the officers are resisting the transfers, alleging that they are meant to create room for unfair distribution of plots.
But in a letter dated July 10 2015, the ministry says the transfers have been made because “the exigencies of service require the immediate posting of the below listed officers”.
Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development principal secretary Ivy Luhanga said this is not the first time the transfers are being made.
She said: “This is not new and most of them are technicians. But they [transfers] are being effected slowly because it all requires resources. We are also coming up with a programme to assemble technical staff from regions to synchronise systems and procedures in land administration. It will involve regional offices before December this year.”