Ex-Vice President Justin Malewezi criticises MDGs

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Former Vice President Justin Malewezi says the current set of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) is difficult to measure and achieve because they are too general.

Malewezi said this in an interview in Mzuzu on Thursday on the sidelines of a post-2015 regional validation workshop in his capacity as national champion of the post-2015 development agenda.

“We have learnt from the first set of the Millennium Development Goals that there were two main shortcomings. One was that the goals or targets were too general. Therefore, it is very difficult to measure on a generality,” Malewezi said.

“The second was that the countries that we gave these MDGs started off at different levels. There were some advanced, some in the middle and others at the bottom, disadvantaged. Yet we expected them to achieve the same targets. We feel that there should be some flexibility.”

Malawi is currently consulting on the development targets that would be prepared after 2015, the year the current set of targets has to be achieved, and the Mzuzu consultative meeting was the first of three.

The meeting pulled together a number of stakeholders including District Commissioners, traditional leaders, representative of Civil Society Organisation (CSOs) and religious leaders.

Deputy Minister of Economic Planning and Development Khwauli Msiska said the development of the current targets was done without due consultation, stressing that would be the cause for failure to achieve them.

“Pronouncements were made without proper consultation. That has been realised and it is what we are trying to address under the United Nations arrangement,” said Msiska. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is coordinating the process and was represented in Mzuzu.

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