LILONGWE-(MaraviPost) – Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe on Tuesday cast cast doubt to the calls to increase the Constituency Development Funds (CDF) because of reports the funds were abused in various councils.
The Minister stand, comes amid requests from Members of Parliament to increase the CDF from the current MK18 million to MK30 million.
But Gondwe’s summary speech on the proposed 2017/18 national budget, painted a gloomy picture on how the funds have been misused in district councils.
The Minister disclosed that the systematic audit of 16 councils, which was carried out, found that the CDF, Local Development Funds (LDF) and District Development Fund (DDF), have gone down the drain, without any project to show for it on the ground.
He said before he could increase the allocations to CDF, LDF and DDF, there was need to examine ways of ensuring that resources are used for the intended purposes and that the structures constructed are of acceptable quality and standards.
“It is being proposed that before we can increase CDF, as much as the majority of members have requested this year, we should increase CDF by only MK2 million to MK20 million per member and nothing to DDF,” said Gondwe.
The Minister announcement received much applause from lawmakers, although they were silent on report levels of funds mismanagement.