DEPUTY Chief Registrar Sipho Banda says she is upset with the delay in the commencement of the mobile issuance of National Registration Cards (NRCs) in Mazabuka District because it is inconveniencing local residents.

But Mazabuka Central UPND member of parliament Gary Nkombo has charged that the delay was a deliberate ploy to disadvantage residents who want to get NRCs.

On Monday, Mazabuka residents were left stranded at various centres as they gathered to collect their NRCs, but many centres were found closed due to non-availability of materials for printing the cards.

In an interview, Banda explained that she only received information about the incident on Monday night, and was yet to receive a full report.

“To be honest with you, I was not aware of that incident, I was just informed about it very late. So, today (Tuesday), I have just actually communicated with the officer that they give me a report. So, I can’t say much until I am told by the officer what exactly happened. I don’t want to misinform you. I am just waiting for the officers to give me a report as to why. I am waiting for a report because, actually, it upset me a lot, so I am just waiting for a report,” said Banda.

However, Nkombo has charged that the delay was a deliberate ploy to disadvantage Mazabuka residents.

“I am fully aware and I have done a letter after talking to the Registrar-General to register my disappointment at what we call, as a matter of fact, a deliberate ploy to eat into the time of Mazabuka. So, my surprise was that the Registrar-General expressed ignorance about the shortage of materials for the first two days in Mazabuka. As at 22:00hrs yesterday (Monday) when I was having a conversation with her, she promised that somebody would be in Mazabuka by now, around nine o’ clock, to deliver all the required materials. What I have told her is that I am going to write a letter to the effect that the three days, including today, that we have lost must be recovered. Basically, I am delivering that today,” said Nkombo.

“The country must know that this is deliberate. PF is working again with the Office of the Registrar-General, the Office of the District Commissioner to disadvantage people and create a stampede on an exercise that is supposed to be free from all these negative occurrences. So, we are waiting and we will check if the situation has normalised and then I am delivering a letter to complain to the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs to actually stop fooling people!”