Local Government and Rural Development minister, Ben Phiri, says the fight against corruption in local councils will not spare anyone if communities are to benefit fully from decentralization.
A statement signed by Principal Secretary in the Ministry, Charles Kalemba, says the newly-appointed minister is determined to sweep clean all councils using all legally-mandated statutes.
“The fight against corruption and curbing pilferage of government resources as advanced by the State President will not spare anyone involved in corruption in my ministry. The citizenry cannot benefit from decentralization being implemented in our ministry if corruption is not busted and dealt with decisively,” Phiri is quoted as saying in the statement.
Phiri, during his recent visits to councils across the country, learnt of investigations into a myriad of tendencies in regards to misappropriation of public funds by officers.
In Mangochi, Dedza and Salima district councils several officers are on suspension to pave way for investigation after allegations of embezzlement of millions of Kwachas.
In a bid to expedite the corruption fight, the ministry has gone on a campaign to sensitize Malawians on how they can report financial malpractices in their councils.
“The ministry appeals to the general public to report any cases of corruption, theft and fraud in councils to the Ministry offices at Capital Hill or alternatively at Anti Corruption Bureau,” reads the statement.
Since getting into office, the youthful minister had been on the ground supervising projects under his ministry’s jurisdiction.
Months ago, Phiri ordered Blantyre City Council to withhold payment to a contractor who constructed one of the city roads up until they (the contractor) repair some sections of the road.
Commentators and governance experts have hailed Phiri for getting into his job with the seriousness his office deserves.
Local Government and Rural Development ministry is one of the largest cabinet portfolios in terms of personnel and socio-economic influence on livelihoods.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :