• MPs have monopolistic power on CDF.
• The Act gives much power to the Ministers.
• There is urgent need for amendment of this piece of legislation.
Zambian Empowerment Hub for Entrepreneurship and Skills Training (ZEHEST) has called for an immediate amendment to the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) Act of 2018.
Speaking to Money FM News, Organization Executive Director Clarence Muzyamba said this is because Members of Parliament have monopolistic power on CDF as the Act gives much power to the Ministers.
Mr. Muzyamba noted that according to the CDF Act, a committee consists of part- time members appointed by the Minister, a situation he says should not be the case.
“We have read the CDF Act and our findings show that MPs have monopolistic power on CDF as the Act gives much power to the Ministers, the preamble itself speaks volumes. It states that a committee consists of the following part time members appointed by the Minister.”
“This should not be the case, this is a big lacuna, we are proposing an urgent amendment of this piece of legislation,” Mr. Muzyamba said.
He also observed that the law gives too much power to the Minister on how the funds will be disbursed, instead of communities themselves through their chosen representatives to identify and agree on how the funds will work.
“We have also discovered that the law gives too much power to the Minister on how the funds will be disbursed. We want the communities themselves through their chosen representatives to agree on how these funds will work, which project is viable and not the Minister,” he stated.
Meanwhile, Mr. Muzyamba commended government for increasing CDF from K1.5 to K25.7 million in the 2022 national budget.
According to the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) Act Number 11 of 2018, the Minister is responsible for implementation of this Act, ensuring prudent management of the Fund, receipt, review and approval of project lists from Committees, ensuring the compilation of proper records, returns and reports from the constituencies, and receiving and review annual reports and returns from Councils.