Mzimba residents, with support from Voice of Livingstonia (VoL) Radio Station, have embarked on an initiative to complete school projects that stalled due to alleged mismanagement of public funds.
Speaking at the district executive committee (DEC) meeting on Thursday, VoL project officer Franklin Mumba said the locals want to complete construction of Luhawani Secondary School at Emanyaleni which stalled in 2002 and a block at Magogo Primary School.
He said the people have since instituted a resource mobilisation committee to raise funds for the abandoned projects.
Mumba said the decision was arrived at after the locals failed to get convincing answers from authorities as to why the projects were abandoned.
“Lack of information is a major challenge in rural areas. Usually, locals do not have information about projects taking place in their areas; hence, authorities take advantage of the knowledge gap to mismanage funds,” he said.
M’mbelwa District Council procurement officer Robert Tambala, who represented the district commissioner at the meeting, said empowering the rural people with information will help them to demand development and improve transparency and accountability in the district.
“As a council, that is also our priority to ensure that the locals are knowledgeable about developments that are taking place in their areas to avoid suspicions on mismanagement of funds,” he said.
VoL is implementing a project in the district called Increased Access to Information; A Gateway to Meaningful Development to the tune of K18 million. n