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Blantyre District Council tipped on Governance Funding

By Loness Gwazanga

Blantyre, January 12, Mana: National Local Government Finance Committee (NLGFC) Wednesday engaged Blantyre District Council on how best they can perform to pass the Local Authority Performance Assessment (LAPA), which is the key to accessing World Bank’s Governance to Enable Service Delivery (GESD) funds.

The District alongside Nkhotakota, Thyolo and Mchinji missed GESD funding amounting to K4.9 billion grant after failing to reach the minimum access conditions which included adverse audit opinions in the Audited Financial Statements for the 2019/2020 Financial Year.

NLGFC Board Chairperson Commissioner, Richard Chapweteka described the meeting as timely as it would help the district prepare their reports perfectly through the committee’s corrections and suggestions.

“We are engaging all the councils that failed on compliance issues on GESD funding so that we see what has been done so far in readiness for the assessment.

“For example, Blantyre district missed K200 million which would have helped serve its residents through various services. This was unfortunate and should not happen again,” he revealed.

Blantyre District Council Chairperson, Sigele Kasasi admitted not to have performed according to standards but assured to raise the bar to secure the funding for the benefit of people at the grassroots.

“The issues raised during the last assessment were not serious because if all the necessary audits were done, then we would have received the funding. We will do our best this time to secure the funding,” he said.

Kasasi called for support from the Central Government especially on project management as it would guide implementation process as well as quality.

The GESD funding which will run for a period of five years saw councils being given a minimum of K21 million while the highest Lilongwe District Council received about K580 million in the current financial year (2020-2021).