Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Member of Parliament for Nsanje Lalanje, Gladys Ganda, has been elected chairperson of the Budget and Finance Committee of parliament following the resignation of Lilongwe Msozi North MP, Sosten Gwengwe in keeping with the legal provision that Chairperson(s) of the committee must always come from the opposition.
Ganda becomes the second woman in Malawi to assume the leadership of the committee as its Chairperson.
Speaking in an interview with Nyasa Times, Ganda said she is excited by her new position because it would give her an opportunity and platform to contribute to the social and economic development of the country and afford Malawians uplifted livelihoods.
“I am obviously excited to be elected to the position of Chairperson of the Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament and I know that this is a vote of confidence in me from my fellow members in the committee. I want to assure them as well as the people that I represent that I will work with dedication to fulfill the mandate of the committee.
“I am also aware of the challenges that come with this responsibility but our committee is a team of highly competent legislators and I know that together we will do great work in providing oversight roles to budgetary, finance and taxation processes to ensure that the budgets that parliament passes reflect the aspirations of Malawians. We will therefore need the support of all Malawians in this regard,” said Ganda.
Throwing his weight behind her election, Leader of Opposition in Parliament who is also DPP Vice President for the south, Kondwani Nankhumwa, said he has all the trust that Ganda would be equal to her new responsibilities because she is a capable person.
“I know and have worked with Honourable Ganda in various forums in the party and I will be the first one to vouch for her capabilities. In her, the Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament has found a Chairperson with enormous abilities and a huge persona to make things work for the better. As a party, we will ensure that we give her the support she needs to discharge her duties effectively,” said Nankhumwa.
He added that DPP believes in equal opportunities regardless of gender, creed or colour and that this is the reason why the party is excited with the election of Ganda because it confirms what it has always stood for and promoted.
Said Nankhumwa: “The election of Honourable Ganda to the position of Chairperson will help in bringing about the gender balance in as far as women representation in critical parliamentary roles is concerned”.
The Budget and Finance Committee is appointed by the House pursuant to Section 56 (7) of the Constitution to consider matters relating to the national budget and government taxation policies.
Among other things, the committee reports on economic issues, statistical information, internal agreements, and reports on economic and policy statements. It is also responsible for sharpening public awareness of the budget and government financial and economic policies so as to encourage informed debate on the budget among Malawians.
The committee also advises the National Assembly on government’s domestic and international borrowing policies; it studies government taxation policies as well as reporting on the same to the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Economic Planning and Development plus other relevant stakeholders such as bilateral and multilateral partners.
It also reviews bills that have financial and budget implications and any other matter that the House may refer to it. On top of this the committee is also tasked with the responsibility of monitoring the implementation of the budget throughout its cycle, and to report on its findings to the House for action.
Ganda first contested for the Nsanje Lalanje parliamentary seat in a by-election that took place in October 2017 where she lost to Lawrence Sitolo of MCP. She bounced back to win the seat in the May 2019 election to begin her first term as parliamentarian.
Her election to the position of Chairperson for the Budget and Finance Committee has been buoyed by her deeper knowledge in finance and taxation as well as her vast experience having worked in the private sector for many years.
She comes with a Bachelor of Science Degree obtained from University of Malawi’s Chancellor College. She also holds an MBA from Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town (UCT) and an ACCA Diploma in Financial Management. Before winning the Nsanje Lalanje parliamentary seat, she was Deputy Chief Executive Officer for National Oil Company Limited (NOCMA).
For over 20 years, Ganda worked for National Bank of Malawi (NBM) where she rose to the position of Service Centre Manager for Capital City after also undergoing various short courses and continuous training.
Ganda has worked in various departments for the bank including holding the positions of Account Relationship Manager; Business Development Manager in Corporate Banking Division; Senior Manager handling project finance public sector and also Senior Manager in wholesale banking.
She also comes to the position with vast knowledge in banking strategy, design and creativity; company analysis, marketing, credit risk, financial and general management, modern relationship management concepts and approaches; project finance and management.
Ganda advises her fellow women to be proud that they are women of substance because “the country depends on us”.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :