Devolution funds give communities a voice on developmental projects

By Josephine Mugiyo

When development is community-driven, locals appreciate and contribute towards an agenda that works best for them.

The devolution funds have ensured communities are brought on board and so far in areas like Chivi, the positive impact of decentralisation of development is being felt.

Unconfirmed reports suggest that at least 15 girls from Nyahombe village and other surrounding areas in Chivi, fell pregnant last year when they resorted to bush boarding facilities as they attended Shongamiti Secondary School.

This has brought a sobering reality among the community leaders, who have immediately begun work to construct a secondary school in their area using devolution funds.

With all the materials available, the construction of the first block for Tugwi School is almost complete, and this will ensure the children no longer have to walk up to 15 km to the nearest school.

Parents are now helping in the construction of the block by offering their labour and believe the devolution funds are the answer to their community challenges.

Some business people have also decided to chip in and assist the government, with furniture for one classroom already available even before its completion.

“It is easier for us as the business community to then come on board and assist when the government is initiating the development,” said Obert Ngwenya a businessman.

Various projects have been undertaken in Chivi and among those is the Chombwe piped water scheme which is set to provide water for more than 15 000 households.

The devolution funds have enabled development projects to be felt at the village level and communities are confident that more will be done to uplift their livelihoods.