Monday March 04, 2024

Misconduct leads govt funding suspension to sanitation in Zambia

Published : 04 Oct 2023, 23:29

Updated : 04 Oct 2023, 23:38

  DF Report
File Photo: Finnish government by Kotila Laura.

The Foreign Ministry on Tuesday issued a decision to immediately discontinue all payments of discretionary government grants awarded to a sanitation programme in Zambia following suspected misconduct in implementation of the project, said the ministry in a press release on Wednesday.

The ministry on Wednesday also reported the suspected misconduct to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

The Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland has been implementing the Zambia Dry Sanitation Country Programme with a discretionary government grant awarded by Finland’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs for development cooperation by civil society organisations.

In the second phase of the project, extending from 2021 to 2024, the Association and its local partners are working to improve sanitation in Zambia and address issues of poor sanitation.

Internal controls of the Global Dry Toilet Association of Finland have identified a possible misconduct in the project.

The suspected misconduct is estimated to have occurred between November 2022 and June 2023.

The Association informed the Foreign Ministry of the suspicion on Monday and the ministry issued the decision on Tuesday to immediately discontinue all payments of discretionary government grants awarded to the Association.

Payments of awarded discretionary government grants may be discontinued as a temporary measure under the Act on Discretionary Government Grants for the duration of a more detailed investigation.

The ministry and the Global Dry Toilet Association will collaborate to further investigate the suspected misconduct.

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs takes all suspected cases of misconduct very seriously and will address any detected problems, the press release added.