Gender technical working groups in Phalombe on Friday commended the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) for imparting them with Public Expenditure Tracking (PET) knowledge which among other things will help them in monitoring public projects against funds mismanagement.
Patrick Hereke who is Chairperson for Child Protection Committee in Namasoko Village T/A Nkhumba hailed CCJP during a daylong orientation on how the technical working groups could take part in community projects, ensuring that funds meant for the public are fully utilized for the benefit of the citizenry.
According to Hereke, in the absence of the knowledge they attained through the orientation, the groups were handicapped hence they had never made any efforts to take part in budget tracking for local projects.
“Now that we know exactly what to do, we will play our role in ensuring that there is involvement of all local development structures such as Area Development Committees and Village Development Committees that are currently sidelined,” said Hereke.
The orientation enlightened the committees on guidelines governing the implementation of Constituency Development Fund, District Development Funds and Local Development Fund money.
CCJP Project Officer for the Blantyre Archdiocese, Caroline Faiti emphasized on the importance of such knowledge to community structures and all citizens.
“When a good percentage of citizens know how public funds are supposed to be handled by those in authority, loopholes for abuse of such funds are reduced as citizens are able to hold authority accountable; and that alone is reliable security for government resources,” explained Faiti.
She added that another objective of the orientation was to establish good access to information by all citizens concerning development plans, projects and funds that the district has.
CCJP is implementing a Public Expenditure Tracking (PET) project in three districts, namely Karonga, Dowa and Phalombe.