The Zambia Council for Social Development (ZCSD) has called on the government to strengthen the mechanism of how the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) is managed.
ZCSD President Lewis Mwape said that the CDF initiative can only be a success if there is collective participation by the people in their respective constituencies.
Speaking in an interview with ZANIS in Lusaka today, Mr. Mwape said that there is need for citizens to be given enough information to educate them on how the CDF is managed and who should benefit from it.
He said that CDF is a good initiative which should continue as it is one way of developing the country in an even manner.
Mr. Mwape however expressed concerns with the way CDF is being managed by the members of parliament.
He charged that members of parliament were taking CDF as if it was their own money when in fact not.
Mr. Mwape said the trend was making the CDF initiative a failure as it was only influenced by some people in power namely MPs in particular.
Mr. Mwape said guidelines of CDF for a particular year should be communicated to all citizens so that they can fully participate in its implementation.
Mr. Mwape said this will also help in monitoring whether the funds have been rightfully used or not.
He has also called on the law enforcement agencies to make sure that people who misappropriate or fail to account for the CDF are prosecuted.
There have been recent calls by some organisations for the removal of the Constituency Development Fund because of the continued mismanagement and failure to account for it by those entrusted to manage it.
The calls have also been intensified by the recent revelation by Transparency International Zambia (TIZ) of alleged misapplication and diversion of CDF funds by officers at the Ministry of Local Government and Housing.