House passes private-public partnership law

Malawi Parliament on Wednesday approved Bill No. 13 of 2011: Public-Private Partnership, which could see the private sector filling gaps in projects that would otherwise be executed by government.

Opposition lawmakers criticised the bill as a ploy by the “broke” government to use the private sector in infrastructural development.

But Finance Minister Dr Ken Lipenga said the new legislation is vital as it now establishes a legal framework for the participation of private entities in government projects through special agreements.

Lipenga: Bill passed

“This bill will enable government to work hand in hand with the private sector in managing the affairs of the country,” he said.

Lipenga said the law will help stimulate the rate of economic growth and poverty reduction goals.

The minister said there will be guaranteed transparency in the projects.

Among opposition lawmakers who spoke on the bill included  MCP’s Makala Ngozo  of Lilongwe-Mpenu who pointed out that the country had pressing issues to address other than such a bill.

Minister of Information Patricia Kaliati said it was not right to politicise the bill.

The current session will also handle Bill No. 11 of 2011: Constitution (Amendment) (Legal Affairs Committee to present a report on the Bill) and  Bill No. 12 of 2011: Foreign Exchange

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