Members of Dowa District Council have been equipped with knowledge on how to run the council’s business.
The members have been trained in district and urban development planning systems, budgeting and financial management, integrity in council and guidelines for conducting council business.
Speaking during the two-day training workshop, which was organised by the Women Legal Resource Centre (Wolrec) Malawi in partnership with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and Malawi Local Government Association (MALGA), Wolrec facilitator, Elliot Khonje, said the guidelines for conducting council business will help the members to know their roles and minimise conflicts among themselves and with the council secretariat.
Khonje observed that, in some councils, members and officers do not enjoy a cordial working relationship due to, among other factors, political bias, failure to respect each other’s roles and responsibilities, failure by staff to provide members with relevant information and lack of clarity on council’s decisions.
He said Wolrec was implementing a two-year capacity building project in local councils in 11 districts and supporting them to work with the constituents and build relationships with other community leaders and stakeholders.
Dowa West parliamentarian, Alexander Kusamba Dzonzi, observed that the workshop had come late after the council resolved to chase District Commissioner, Fanny Msimuko.
In the month of August during an extra ordinary full council meeting, the councillors voted out the DC.
Kusamba Dzonzi expressed concern over what he called a regrettable decision of chasing the DC out of the district and asked the council to apologise for acting ignorantly.
Dowa District Council’s vice chair, Councillor Cephasi Kafumbula, said the 10-year absence of councillors in the country created a huge gap in fostering development of the district.
Councillor Kafumbula refused to apologise saying the decision remains unchanged because it was agreed at a full council meeting.
The ministry’s spokesperson, Muhlase Mughogho, called for patience from both the council chairperson and members saying the ministry has to follow procedures before removing Fanny Msimuko as Dowa DC.
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