Government has launched a Government-Citizen Engagement Platform to empower Malawians to participate in the affairs of government.
Speaking during the launch of the initiative in Lilongwe on Friday, Minister of Civic Education and National Unity Timothy Mtambo said the platform is crucial as it will see Malawians engage duty-bearers.
Through the platform, there will be public interface meetings where duty-bearers will have to engage with the public. The public will voice out their expectations and duty-bearers will also provide what they are doing.
“This platform gives authority to the people. It is going to promote dialogue between citizens, who are the bosses, and government officials, who are the servants. This platform is going to take government closer to the people,” said Mtambo.
He urged Malawians to embrace the initiative “so that the country becomes a better place for everyone”. The minister said the platform will promote a society that is democratic, patriotic, responsible, civilised and united.
German Ambassador Jurgen Borsch commended the initiative, saying it will enable every Malawian to participate in decision-making. He said the platform is also a commitment to promoting a government that is transparent and accountable.
Livingstonia Synod Church and Society programme director Moses Mkandawire, who is also chairperson of National Anti-Corruption Alliance, hailed government for developing the platform, adding that there is need to intensify civic education so that Malawians become patriotic.
He said Malawians need to be responsible and make decisions that will promote unity and development of the country.
“The way Malawians behave is as if the country is not theirs. It is as if they have just borrowed it and will give it back to the owners. Malawians need to be responsible for their country,” said Mkandawire.
He also said leaders need to speak the truth all the time and be trustworthy.
Mkandawire urged Malawians to support the initiative and participate, saying it will help in holding duty-bearers accountable, but also promote development.
The platform, which also has an electronic version, will bring government closer to the people, and people will be able to question government on various decisions.