Zomba, Zomba District Council on Friday elected Baster Chirwa and Macpherson Sulumba as its new Chairperson and Vice-chairperson respectively.
During a full council meeting which was specifically organised to elect new office bearers, Chirwa of Mswamswa Ward and Member of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) got 15 votes out of 19 members who voted, beating his rival Brazio Chinthenga of Chanda Ward.
In his acceptance speech, Chirwa, who takes over from Wilson Likhusa, promised to steer development in the district without favouring a particular ward or constituency.
“In the past, much emphasis was on politics but my focus in the coming years would be on development. There are a lot of things that our communities need and they look up to us leaders to provide them.
“I will not allow politics to divide us and I am ready to ensure that every ward and constituency gets equal share of development because by doing so, we will have reached out to every corner of the district with the services that people need most,” said Chirwa.
Member of Parliament for Zomba Changalume, John Chikalimba advised the newly elected leadership to stick to development and stop segregating members who are not from his party.
Chikalimba also pleaded with the leadership to think of transforming Zomba which he claimed does not look like a city despite attaining the title way back.
“I was in the opposition and for that reason, I never got any development project from the council; I, therefore, would like to urge the new leadership to put politics [aside] and focus on developing the whole district.
“They should stop targeting individuals because by doing so, they will be denying the masses better services,” he said.
In his remarks, Senior Chief Chikowi urged the new Chairperson and his Vice to be visiting all wards and constituencies and distribute development equally.
“You have been elected for the whole council and not specific wards or constituencies; be leaders of all of us,” the chief said.
The election, administered by the District MEC Office, was described as fair and transparent with no opposing views when results of the winners were announced.