Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Kondwani Nankhumwa on Tuesday launched motor cycle loan scheme for the councillors in Lilongwe.
The launch of the motor cycle loans follows Councillors threats to hold vigil at Capital Hill over delays in disbursing the motor cycle loans.
Speaking during the function which was attended by District Commissioners, council chairpersons, and President of Malawi Local Government Association (MALGA), Nankhumwa commended councillors for being patient despite the delays in disbursement of the loans.
Nankhumwa said he was aware that since the first tripartite elections were held on 20th May, 2014, Councillors have been agitating to receive the motorcycle loans which they were promised by the Government.
According to the Minister, the delay in fulfilling this promise resulted in most Councillors being frustrated, reportedly, because of challenges in mobility owing to the large size of their wards.
“But today we can celebrate the fruits of teamwork. Hence, I cannot hide my excitement at this function, today marks another milestone when Councillors will, from now onwards, access their long awaited motorcycle loans, which Government has extended to them,” said Nankhumwa.
During the same ceremony, Nankhumwa said the establishment of a motorcycle scheme for Councillors, should always keep at the back of minds that it is a loan scheme, and not a gift.
“This entails that beneficiaries of the scheme will pay back the loans through deductions at source. In this regard, the scheme is a revolving fund which will benefit even the next cohort of Councillors in 2019 and beyond. In view of this, I urge all Councillors to make up your minds and access the loan if you really need it,” the Minister said.
Nankhumwa said although the government has now addressed the issue of mobility for Councillors,
the Minister said he was aware that challenges rocking the Local Government System are numerous.
He said some of the challenges are systemic while others emanate from the low absorptive capacities of stakeholders which are affected by local government reforms under decentralization.
“Government is keen to address all the challenges so that local government should truly take the centre stage in local governance and local development,” the Minister said
During the function, MALGA president, Samson Chaziya commended government for the motorcycle loans, saying the fight of access to mobility is over.
The councillors according to the ministry will get K1million loan which will be recovered through dedications from their honorarium.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :