Head of cooperation of European Union (EU) in Malawi Lluis Navarro has said citizen empowerment can go a long way in strengthening organisations that provide civic education in the country.
He said civic empowerment can help the citizens to take to task non-performing duty-bearers, observing that this is a remedy that can help the country attain meaningful development.
Navarro said this on Tuesday in Mangochi at the opening of a national planning and training workshop National Initiative for Civic Education (Nice) Trust organised for its staff and board members aimed at developing coherent plans to implement for the year 2018/19.
In an interview, Navarro said Malawi’s slow development symbolises that citizen’s capacity to demand quality and sustainable services from their leaders is low; hence, the country needs organisations that promote democracy and good governance to assume the civic empowerment role.
He said: “We need organisations such as Nice to seal the gap in order to enhance the capacity of Malawian citizens to actively participate in decision and policymaking processes at all levels.”
Speaking earlier, Nice Trust board chairperson Susan Kaunda said her organisation will continue establishing citizen forums in the communities because they are peoples’ mouthpiece on critical issues.
“We will continue capacitating citizens, service users, communities and civil society organisations to demand greater accountability and responsiveness from the public officials and relevant service providers,” she said.