The National Civic Education (Nice) Trust in Chikwawa has commended communities who have formed citizen forum committees in their areas, saying they are a mouthpiece for communities on development issues .
Chikwawa Nice civic education officer, Joseph Chamambala said citizen forum committees are formed to critically assess various developmental projects in the communities so that duty bearers, such as members of Parliament(MPs) and councillors, can be held responsible whenever issues of transparency and accountability are not observed.
Chamambala said the committees monitor projects such as roads, school blocks, and health facilities within their communities.
He said: “They are asked to conduct thorough analysis before taking up an issue. As an office we have been to areas where these committees are in place and have observed that many issues are coming out into the open.”
On his part, Kasisi Citizen Forum Committee spokesperson, Samson Beyard said the forums have benefitted communities as they now know that office bearers are answerable to them on development projects.
He said: “Previously, even when we saw projects being vandalised in our areas, we did not care because we thought they belonged to government, but now that mentality is gone and everyone takes responsibility for the developmental projects taking place in their areas.”
Chikwawa Nice is implementing the project in Chikwawa with funding from the European Union (EU).