German International Cooperation (GIZ) country director Ute Borges says Malawi needs tight financial systems in district councils to improve financial governance as the country is battling to recover from its economic woes.
Speaking during an international mid-term evaluation and planning workshop for local finance management in Malawiâ€™s capital, Lilongwe on Monday, Borges said Germany is committed to supporting capacity building for efficient use of funds in local authorities.
“Malawi is facing turbulent times, especially with the severe shortage of forex; hence, good financial management becomes even more important than just a part of the whole process of development,” she said.
Borges challenged delegates from Zambia, Mozambique and Malawi to propose programmes to GIZ that would ensure councils to have adequate capacity to use funds efficiently.
Local Government and Rural Development Secretary Kester Kaphaizi cited lack of transparency and inadequate personnel as some of the challenges councils are facing to check abuse or poor use of funds.
“Finances are a bloodline of any organisation and with decentralisation, there are a lot of billions being transferred to councils. We are facing challenges, especially in management of local finances and lack of necessary mechanisms for improved public service delivery.
“It is, therefore, important that financial managers in the local authorities are trained to efficiently manage the funds,” said Kaphaizi.