Three civil society organisations (CSOs) have unveiled an initiative to provide Malawians with a voice on council affairs and assess the performance of elected officials since last year’s polls.
The partners—Church and Society of the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP) Synod of Livingstonia, Voice of Livingstonia and Phunzilani Development Organisation—conceived the civic education initiative to empower people in Mzuzu, Mzimba and Nkhata Bay to track down promises councillors and members of Parliament (MPs) made prior to the elections.
The initiative will also complement councils’ efforts to improve service delivery and ensure people demand interventions they deserve, according to Mzuzu City Council director of town planning and estate management Alexander Chirambo.
He said: “There are a lot of things that people do not know about projects being implemented, services being delivered and how to track funding and demand services. Sometimes, they demand things that are not within the mandate of councils because of the knowledge gap.”
Church and Society project officer Paul Mvula said the initiative is a continuation of the issue-based campaign where aspiring MPs and councillors in Mzimba, Nkhata Bay and Mzuzu signed social contracts with the electorate.
“ We want to give people the capacity to follow up on the promises the aspirants made both in writing and on the podium,” he said.
The programme is financed by the National Democratic Institute (NDI). n