Malawi President Arthur Peter Mutharika says his government is localizing United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a bid to incorporate relevant precepts of the global blueprint to suit national developmental goals.
Speaking at Kamuzu Palace on Wednesday when he hosted SDG Advocate for the United Nations, Graca Machel, President Mutharika highlighted what his government is and plans to do so as to attain all SDGs by the year 2030.
“As part of localising the SDGs, my government is in the process of formulating the successor of the Malawi Growth Development Strategy (MGDS) Two (II), which expires in June, 2016. The MGDS Three (III) will be the next national development strategy framework for the next five years, and will incorporate the SDGs that are relevant and applicable to Malawi, together with the African Union Agenda 2063 goals, as a way of aligning our development plans to the international commitment on sustainable development,” he said.
According to President Mutharika, government is implementing programmes within SDGs agenda, in areas of skills development, food security, healthcare, social welfare, energy, climate change and environmental management, and natural disaster reduction and management.
The President further dissected all impending plans that are going to support the implementation of SDGs in Malawi’s context.
“To ensure that indeed this is achieved, government is in the process of establishing a National Planning Commission, which will be responsible for our country’s medium term and long-term planning. We underline the importance of linking implementation of the SDGs to the national budget, as well as calling for support from our development partners. We also believe in efficient coordination and a strong institutional framework, in ensuring ownership by the people of Malawi, and sustained economic growth and development,” he pointed out.
The establishment of a National Planning Commission comes at a time when technocrats from all sectors of the economy are demanding a clear strategic blueprint which will guide Malawi’s development agenda both in the medium and long term.
The Malawi leader expressed his government’s commitment to achieve all the SDGs unlike what Malawi managed to achieve under the immediate past development blueprint, Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
“My government is firmly committed to implement the 2030 SDGs. We have learned a number of valuable lessons from the implementation of the MDGs, and so we will act differently on SDGs,” he said.
Malawi managed to achieve four of the eight MDGs: namely: (a) Reduce Child Mortality; (b) Combat HIV and AIDS, Malaria and other diseases; (c) Ensure Environmental Sustainability; and (d) Develop Global Partnerships for Development.
Graca Machel, once married to former Mozambique leader Samora Machel and later to South Africam freedom icon Nelson Mandela, is a global icon whose influence cuts across key sectors of humanity such as sustainable development, gender equality, women empowerment, economic emancipation and poverty eradication among others.
She has among other areas played a key role in the Africa Progress Panel, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Advocacy Group, and the High-Level Panel on Post-2015 Development Agenda.