CFSC Drilling ADCs on Public Finance Management
The Center For Social Concern is drilling some local governance structures like area development committees on how they can track public finances like the constituency development funds allocated to their areas.
This follows continued concern across the nation about abuse in the use of resources from CDF where parliamentarians and other duty bearers sideline the stipulated guidelines when implementing projects.
Speaking on the sidelines of a three-day training for Kampingo Sibande area development committee in Mzimba CFSC economic governance program officer Bernard Mphepo said there is a need to think outside the box on how public finances like the Constituency Development Funds are managed and utilized if they are to benefit the citizens.
Mphepo said though the funds are supposed to be managed by the constituents according to the available guidelines MPs use the funds as if they are from their own pockets
"The challenge across the country is that members of parliament are personalizing this fund as a result there is poor service, a lot of corruption and a lot of issues are coming out just because of not managing these funds in a transparent way," Said Mphepo.
Mphepo said as a Center they expect citizens to demand transparency and accountability and be able to follow issues of public finance management.
"Currently the biggest challenge that we have in Malawi is limited knowledge on public finance management and at the same time, the communities do not have interest in public finance management a thing which gives room to duty bearers to abuse the resources," said Mphepo.
According to Mphepo this lack of interest in public finance management translates into the country having a huge inequality gap between the poor and the rich.
He emphasized the need for the media in disseminating information on the importance of communities being able to track public finances as one way of checking abuse of such resources.
Chairperson for Kampingo Sibande Area Development Committee Thomalison Muva said the training has been an eye-opener on how they can track how public resources allocated to their area are being managed and utilized.
"The training has built our capacity to ensure that duty bearers are acting in a transparent and accountable manner and this will also check corruption which is rampant among those implementing projects",Said Muva.
CFSC is implementing a public finance management project in the districts of Mzimba, Phalombe, Mangochi, and Zomba among others with funding from GIZ on a pilot basis.
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