- Include the voice of the poor, of women, of people with disabilities, and of the marginalized in the agenda
Malawi President Dr Joyce Banda has asked for a recommitment to global peace and security in order to make the post-2015 agenda achievable.
In her address to the General Debate of the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on 24th September 2013, President Banda who is also chairperson of the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) said conflict, instability and civil unrests disrupt the world’s development efforts.
“As we look forward to the Post-2015 Agenda, we should recommit to global peace and security. As a mother, I felt compelled to make this appeal,” she said pledging Malawi’s full engagement in the Post-2015 Development Agenda.
President Banda also asked global leaders and planners to include the voice of the poor, of women, of people with disabilities, and of the marginalized in the agenda, noting that she is optimistic about a world of shared prosperity.
She said while many people have argued that the best strategy to achieve Millennium Development Goals is to realize GDP growth, she was of the view that putting income into poor households that must come first.
“The issues that affect population growth, malnutrition, girls’ access to education, maternal health are all rooted in poverty and particularly lack of income at the household level. If we are to overcome these challenges we need to promote policies and programmes that bring decent incomes into households.
“In this regard, my government has sought new partnerships with private sector, local communities, and development partners, to deliver development in more innovative ways.
She said to this end her Government is focusing on transforming rural economies and breaking the vicious cycle of underdevelopment and poverty.
Banda said her administration has therefore decided to invest in improving the livelihoods of poor people in the rural and urban areas.
“This Transformation Initiative is aimed at modernizing our rural communities by bringing a standard package of interventions in health, education, water, sanitation and housing,” she said.
She told the General Assembly that her Government has also rolled out the Malawi Rural Electrification Programme that aims at spurring industry, trade and agricultural productivity through the provision of electricity.
The Government, she said, is also implementing Community Savings and Investment Programme to promote a saving culture and building of assets to enhance income and wealth creation.
“I see this leading to the majority of the poor being active participants of our economy.
“If we cannot uplift the people that are in our rural areas, as is the case for many developing countries, to earn decent income in the household, the vicious cycle of population growth, malnutrition, maternal risks and poverty will remain with us. If the Post 2015 Development Agenda is to realise its dream, we need to go to the grassroots where the poor are.”
The Malawi leader said she therefore welcomed the idea that under the Post-2015 agenda, progress should be tracked against goals by looking at them across all levels of income.
“This will drive us to equality of opportunities for people across all income groups and help us realize our dream of shared prosperity. This is key to restoring the dignity of all our people,” she stressed.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :