Government has increased the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) from K1.6 million to K25.7 million per constituency.
Speaking when he delivered the proposed 2022 National Budget in Parliament today, Minister of Finance and National Planning Situmbeko Musokotwane said the new dawn administration is taking resources closer to the people.
ZANIS reports that Dr. Musokotwane said the increased allocation to the constituencies especially the rural areas will ensure communities identify their priorities, make budgets and undertake the development programmes that are dear to them.
The minister stated that with the increased allocation for constituencies, government has also widened the scope for utilization of the CDF.
He explained that certain tasks that were previously under the Central government through the district offices will no longer be performed by them as they will be undertaken by the local authorities working with the local communities.
“For example, primary school classrooms, teachers’ houses, desks, rural clinics, staff houses, local courts, small bridges, clearance of canals, community boreholes, dip tanks and small dams must be funded under CDF. Constituencies must budget for all items under CDF,” he said.
Dr. Musokotwane added that community-based projects, empowerment schemes that were previously funded through relevant ministries such as youth and gender will now be funded under CDF.
He explained that bursaries for secondary schools and skills development will also be administered through CDF as it will ensure equity.
The minister further explained that the model will also benefit rural communities unlike the past where concentration was in the urban areas.
He said the sector ministries will continue to provide policy and expert advice in the implementation of CDF financed projects.
“Government will ensure that the CDF and other resources that will be provided to local authorities are used prudently. To attain this, guidelines and standards for utilization, management, monitoring and evaluation of resources are being developed together with capacity building programmes,” he said.
Dr. Musokotwane has since warned on the abuse of CDF and failure to sanction those who misuse the funds will attract heavy punishment.