Constituents to hold demos against MCP MP Chimwendo

Richard Chimwendo Banda

Chiefs and communities in Dowa are mobilising themselves to hold demonstrations against their MP Richard Chimwendo Banda over the K4 billion fund.

Dowa District Commissioner, Alex Mdooko

Villagers surrounding in Tsikiti primary school in the area of Traditional Authority Chiwere in Dowa will protest at the District Commissioner’s (DC) office to force their MP Richard Chimwendo Banda to tell them the truth surrounding K4 billion Community Constituency Development Fund which Parliament shared equally to the 193 constituencies of the country.

Each constituency was allocated K19 million but the constituents say Tsikiti primary school block project committee was only given K25,000 and they were not told what the money is for.

According to an inside source who is a member of the project committee, the demos were set for this week but were cancelled to a later day in the coming weeks due to the heavy rains which are falling in the area making most of the roads impassable.

The source said the project committee of Tsikiti School was all set for their project and had done foundations for the classroom block.

The committee later presented a quotation for building materials to Chimwendo which included cement at K 7,500 per bag but this was turned down by the honourable MP.

The source said what surprised the committee was that the MP preferred to procure cement from Lilongwe at an alleged price of K10,000 per bag for reasons best known to himself.

When questioned by the villagers, Chimwendo assured them that he will get another quotation for the same in Lilongwe but this has not happened till to date.

Recently, the communities were told that the office of the DC will procure the building materials.

The communities are now tired of waiting for the materials and have decided to protest.

When contacted, MP for Dowa East constituency, Richard Chimwendo Banda denied any knowledge of the K25,000 cash given to the project committee wondering what it was for and its purpose saying he will also probe this.

Chimwendo Banda said the project is being managed by the council which is better placed to shed some light on the Tsikiti school block construction project.

District Commissioner for Dowa, Alex Mdooko faulted the legislator for failing to disseminate the information of the project at the right time saying the issue was discussed at the full council.

Mdooko said Community Constituency Development Fund was approved by MPs in Parliament who allocated K19 million to constituencies and not the District Commissioner (DC).

He admitted that Tsikiti school block project committee was given K25,000 petty cash to meet other expenses which will be incurred while the project is being implemented saying the cash is not the actual money for the project.

The DC said CDF projects have received funding and the accounts officers are going to the constituencies to pay for the projects.

The Malawi Human Rights Resource Center (MHRRC) with support from the Danish Church Aid (DCA) is implementing Citizen Voice and Action in Local government and Decentralisation processes project in two Traditional Authorities of Kayembe and Chiwere in Dowa where the rights holders are empowered to hold the duty bearers accountable for the projects being implemented in an area.