West New Georgia-Vonavona MP sets history by channelling constituency funds through wards
Member of parliament for West New Georgia-Vonavona, Silas Vangara, has broken history by merging constituency and provincial wards.
His constituency development fund (CDF) will be channelled to the people through the four wards in his constituency for the next two years.
This, he says is for the sake of maximising services, development and reaching every constituent.
No member of parliament has done this, and Mr Vangara’s initiative is said to be one which other MPs will be monitoring very closely.
To ensure its success he signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening yesterday.
The MOU will be signed by Premier of Western Province David Gina when the provincial government meets next week.
Speaking during the signing ceremony yesterday Vangara said the agreement reflects the level of funding he will support his wards.
He said this is the first of its kind given that for the first time, provincial assembly members and Member of Parliament will be working together.
He said the constituency fund will be directed to the province to take ownership and take initiative to provide services to the people.
He said the most difficult thing is having the members of provincial assembly working in one direction with the MP to serve the same people in the constituency.
“I look forward in the next two years and see the report provide.
“I have the full support of the Prime Minister seeing that he found about this new approach.
“This is not something I take it lightly. It has taken me over the course of three term to finally come with to put a potential avenue in how to channel the constituency funds to the wards.”
He acknowledges MPGIS for their support and looks forward to a working partnership.
Permanent Secretary of PGIS Stanley Pirione said there are 172 wards across the country which the ministry wants to equip to deal with project implementation in terms of planning and budgeting.
He said in one constituency there are a few wards. For West New Georgia Vonavona constituency, it has four wards.
“Those wards funding that go for the constituency will channel to them through the provincial government of western province,” he said.
Perioni said before the provincial member receives Ward Development Grant that fund goes through their own account.
“Now it goes through inside Ward Development Committee which means the member might contribute on planning but have no direct influence on the fund,” he said.
Vangara added that the new approach will merge the provincial government, ward member and constituency to come up with one plan and budget to deliver services to the same people they serve.
He said this year his constituency will inject $3.4 million for the four wards within his constituency.
He also wants to make it clear that the funds will be controlled under discretion of the Ward Development Committees.