Dowa: A Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Mapping Report presented to Dowa District Executive Committee (DEC) on Friday revealed gaps on NGO operations in the district with many implementing intervention in easily accessible areas.
DEC members were appalled to learn that NGOs in the district are concentrated in Traditional Authorities Mponela and Mkukula leaving the hard to reach Traditional Authority Msakambewa with the lowest share of programme interventions.
Making a presentation to DEC members on Thursday NGO Board Director of Programmes Kamwana Muyaya said the main objectives of the mapping exercise conducted from February 19 to 20 2018 were to establish the registration status of NGOs operating in Dowa as well as to document the scope of NGO programmes in the district among others.
He said the findings could help guide the district Council when allocating NGOs to areas where there is great need for interventions.
Muyaya explained that the exercise found that many NGOs operating in Dowa are concentrated in Traditional Authorities (TAs) Mponela and Mkukula which share 23 and 21 per cent of NGO programmes respectively in addition to four per cent of programmes that cover all TAs.
The mapping found that the area of TA Msakambewa believed to be one with the most vulnerable people according to the Unified Beneficiary Register (UBR) has the lowest concentration of NGO programmes with six per cent followed by Kayembe and Dzoole with eight per cent each.
Muyaya said the huge presence of NGO programmes in Mponela and Mkukula could be attributed to geographical position and economic activities of the two TAs.
Mponela is a main economic advantaged area in Dowa with access to various public services while Mkukula is close to Lilongwe City and Kamuzu International airport. Your guess on why NGOs are concentrated in these areas is as good as mine he pointed out.
On the NGO budgets the director said after interviewing 48 NGO representatives for 33 NGOs the Board found that Dowa NGOs annual budget for the current financial year stands at K3.7 billion.
He said out of the money TA Chakhadza had the largest budget at K1.1 Billion followed by Mkukula at K917 Million while Msakambewa got the lowest share at K207 Million.
The mapping Report highlighted some challenges by NGOs in the district which included duplication of work among NGOs and promotion of different technologies that sometimes are too conflicting.
It further lists the preferred thematic areas by NGOs which include Health Education Agriculture and Gender with governance and disability receiving the least focus areas.
Muyaya appealed to the NGOs and the Council to make use of the findings in ensuring equal share of development projects and interventions saying every Malawian has a right to development.
Let me ask the Council and NGOs to ensure that development spread evenly to all people in the district regardless of where they are coming from. We are all Malawians and have the right to development he said.
In their remarks many DEC members thanked the NGO Board for carrying out the mapping exercise saying it was an eye opener to authorities in the district.
District Environmental Officer Yusuf Laki who chaired the meeting asked the Board to speed up producing the NGO Directory so that Councils are guided on where to allocate NGOs according to the needs.
NGO Board is a government entity mandated by an Act of Parliament to register and regulate the operations of NGOs in Malawi.
Of late donors have been channeling resources to Malawi off budget and it is believed that NGOs are handling huge sums of money which must find its way to the poor people who need help.
Source: Malawi News Agency MANA