Chingola Mayor Johnson Kangombe has been implicated in the illegal allocation of plots on Kasompe Airstrip land where his council has demolished houses.
Chingola Municipal Council on Saturday morning demolished over 300 structures illegally built on the Kasompe Airstrip, a land on title and belonging to Zambia Civil Aviation Authority.
Chingola Council say it didn’t allocate the land and that structures were erected without planning permission from the Local Authority hence prompting the demolition.
Victims of the demotion have protested by burning Mr. Kangombe’s house and lodge in Chingola saying he allocated the land on Kasompe Airstrip.
Copperbelt Police Commanding Officer Sharon Zulu has confirmed in a statement that Mr. Kangombe has been mentioned by victims of the housing demotion in Kasompe.
“The operation started around 02.00am and went on well though the affected families complained about the Chingola Mayor whom they accused of being the one who sold them the demolished plots,” Ms. Zulu said.
“Following the planned demolishing at Kasompe Air Strip reported to Council sometime in November 2021 by Civil Aviation.A decision through Council Resolutions meetings were made to demolish the encroached structures in the perimeters of the Air Strip .Hence on 19/08/22 a meeting of Stakeholders was held at Council Chambers to plan ahead of the demolishing. It is from these meetings that on 20/08/22 around 02.00am Council officials and State Police stated the long pending demolishing excise which eventually led to the Arson at the Chingola Mayor’s two properties,” she said.
Ms. Zulu continued:”It’s therefore reported that on 20/08/22 between 0600hrs and 0800 hours in Kasompe area, Chingola, His Worship the Mayor JOHNSON KANGOMBE aged 44 reported that unknown Criminals burnt his two properties on two different plots, a Guesthouse, and a servant’s quarter whose plot number all situated in Kasumpe Area . The value of the two destroyed property is not yet ascertained.Brief facts of the matter are that , on 20/08/2022 at about 01:00 hours, Council and State Security had an operation of demolishing houses built on Civil Aviation Authority property at Kasompe Air Strip in Chingola.Fire Brigade managed to quench the fire though by then, the guesthouse had already been burnt, and all the window and property inside destroyed in the . Police too visited the two crime scenes where it was discovered that the fire extensively damaged the whole guesthouse. Investigations since been instituted to identify the ring leaders so that they could be apprehended, and be charged accordingly”
Earlier on Saturday, Chingola Council Assistant Public Relations Manager Evelyn Mulenga had confirmed the demolition in Kasompe.
“The Municipality, through the department of Development Planning issued enforcement notices on 15th February, 2022 for the developers to suspend all works and demolish the structures within a period of 28 days as they were being done without planning permission required under the provisions of section, 49(1) and (2) of the Urban and Regional Planning Act No.3 of 2015 of the laws of Zambia.Despite issuance of the notices and engagement with the developers to stop illegal construction, the developers continued to erect illegal structures,” Ms. Mulenga said.
“Members of the public are hereby warned to consult the local authority and acquire building permission before building structures as the Municipality is mandated by law to administer land on behalf of the Government.Council further reminds that the move to demolish illegal structures is not meant to injure the illegal developers but deter people from constructing structures without council’s approval.Council will therefore not be to blame for demolition if developers do not heed to the local authority’s advice,” she said.