Minister for Development Planning and Aid Coordination Jeremiah Manele reiterated that the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) is the only funding that reaches out to the rural populace.
He made the statement during the recent parliament meeting which led to the passage of the 2018 budget.
“Mr. Speaker, a large portion of the 2018 development budget is allocated to the Ministry of Rural Development, specifically for the 50 constituencies.
“Mr. Speaker, this is not a surprise. All the MPs on the other side of the House will agree with me that, it is perfectly justified and strategic since 80% of our people are in the rural areas,” Manele remarked.
He added “The use and impact of CDFs are also cross-sectoral. That is, CDFs have been used to address a number of sectors in the rural areas including infrastructure development, transport, health, education, housing, lighting, water and sanitation, women initiatives, micro income generating projects, youth, and churches. Sir, the onus is on all 50 Members of Parliament to continue to ensure that CDFs are used wisely and that we improve our reporting and accountability mechanisms.”
He said it is also important that Constituency Development Plans are closely aligned to the National Development Strategy.
Manele said, his ministry will continue to monitor the implementation of the 2018 development budget and ensure public resources are used prudently and treated responsibly, in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and Treasury, using the fiscal discipline and measures outlined by the Minister of Finance.
“In time, Sir, it is our fervent intention that the National Planning Bill that Ministry for Development Planning and Aid Coordination (MDPAC) is currently developing will introduce and put in place enforcen1ent and compliance measures that would improve the process for developing more credible and responsible annual development budgets with prudent management and monitoring mechanism for their implementation.
By AATAI JOHN LAUNGI