The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) aimed at mitigating corruption among the local authorities
The signing ceremony on Monday took place in Blantyre at the Crossroads Hotel during the official opening of an interface working session on rebranding for local authorities performance improvement.
In a spirit of cooperation and mutual interest, the two parties have agreed to particularly corroborate and coordinate to fight corruption in the District Councils in projects like the constituency development fund, district development fund and water fund among others.
Speaking during the event, Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Benson Malunga Phiri said with the decentralization system, more powers have been bestowed to district councils to execute government projects hence they are prone to corruption.
Phiri noted that through the MoU, corruption, incompetence, inefficiencies, abuse of government resources will be dealt with adding that in the next three years, every council must be a corrupt free zone.
“The ACB is there to lead in fighting corruption since it is evil and derail a lot of developments. It begins with us the ministry of local government. A lot of funds are being channeled to the councils and with us executing the job, the corruption in the councils will be curtailed,’’ he said.
ACB Director General Reyneck Matemba said the MoU outlines the duties to be discharged by the bereau and also provisions on what the councils must do in fighting corruptions as well as expectations by the ministry of local government from the councils.
“We have already worked on action plan on the way forward and some of the things that are contained in it, we are already doing. As ACB, we mainly work with institutions integrity committees which is an entry point for us.”
“Moving forward, we will be able to through our corruption prevention department, work with each and every district councils and we will be able to monitor progress on the implementation of the activities that we have agreed,’’ said Matemba.
This is the first time in the country’s history for a cabinet minister to embark on clean up campaign of the councils with an aim of serving ordinary Malawians well.