Friday, May 04, 2012

Malumo calls on media, CSOs to take decisive action against corruption

Malumo calls on media, CSOs to take decisive action against corruption
By Lovely Kayombo
Fri 04 May 2012, 09:20 CAT

BETTER aid inflow can only come in when there is a serious fight against corruption, says Action Aid Africa advocacy coordinator Henry Malumo. In an interview, Malumo said the fight against corruption has to move from mere talk and politicking and called on civil society organisations and the media to take a more decisive step to end the vice.

He said freedom and access to information is fundamental in the attainment of the developmental goals, saying where this has happened, leaders are accountable to their citizens and services are delivered "because government budgets are responsive to the needs of its citizens and government priorities".

He said the absence of access to information leads to plunder and mismanagement of resources by leaders in government.

"A lot more needs to be done by members of the society, media and civil society in fighting corruption and hold the government accountable. In the absence of access to information, there will be plunder, mismanagement of resources," he said.

Malumo said the current government has made positive policy changes which will ultimately lead to the attainment of millennium developmental goals and urged them not to backtrack on their set objectives.

"There are areas where the PF government has made very positive policy changes that will ultimately lead to the attainment of MDG' of the most important thing is the fact that the MDGs are very near now, the target of 2015 is close and it requires coming up with efforts and not backtracking," he said.

Malumo said the government needs to look at eradicating poverty and hunger critically.

"Another critical area is to begin looking at MDG goal number one of halving hunger and poverty. I think there haven't been major positive gains in the area of poverty reduction first of all because the concentration has not positively diverted from commercial farmers to the small holder farmers which will provide food for consumption, the perception in the agriculture sector is that commercial farmers are producing food for consumption and I think that is not true, in fact most of them may not be producing food for eating, they are into agriculture for commercial gains and for export outside our markets," he said.

Malumo urged the government to make major investment in small holder farmers who need help.

"We haven't made major investments in small holder farmers which is a worrying factor and also categorical investment in women who need that help. We have still continued from the MMD trend where there was much of talk and less action...I am hoping that the move and decision to reduce interest rates by banks will ultimately empower small holder farmers and local producers to be able to compete and be able to export so that they are able to inject in foreign currency," he said.

Malumo also said the MMD government took the country slightly backwards because there was irresponsible contraction of debt after debt cancellation.

"We hope that the PF government will be prudent and transparent in its borrowing so that when they contract debt, it will be one that is agreeable," said Malumo.

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