Minister of Information, Communication Technology and Civic Education, Patricia Kaliati, has challenged district information officers (DIOs) to provide and disseminate rightful information to the public and the media for Malawi to achieve all 17 SDGs.
Kaliati made the remarks on Wednesday in Blantyre when she opened a two-day awareness building workshop for DIOs from the country’s 28 districts and other officers from Information offices on SDGs coordinated by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
She said there is need to localise the SDGs to make them achievable by 2030 and as such, it is crucial for people who represent her ministry in the district to make people aware of what is needed and expected of them by providing information to them as well as to the media.
“Information is power. People at the grassroots need to understand the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. For us to make the 17 SDGs a reality, we need to have a bottom-up approach where DIOs should go into the communities
interact with the people and disseminate the information,” said Kaliati.
In an interview on the sidelines of the meeting, DIO for Chitipa Ed-Grant Ndoza said the DIOs are ready to deliver, but what frustrates them most of the times is lack of resources in their various districts.
UNDP economics adviser Alka Bhatia said the agency decided to involve the information officers to remind them that they are ambassadors to popularise the agenda 2030 as well as the 17 SGDs.
“The agenda 2030 is neither a UN agenda nor a government agenda but, rather, it is Malawians’ agenda. As such, it has to be taken to the grassroots. People need to know it and understand what it is about,” said Bhatia.
The 17 SDGs are an intergovernmental set of aspiration goals with 169 targets whose unifying thread is the commitment to ending poverty