UNDP Five-year Programme for Eswatini Unpacked
Following the recent launch of the Country Programme Document (CPD) for the Kingdom of Eswatini (2021-2025), UNDP Eswatini and the Ministry of Economic Planning and Development (MEPD) unpacked CPD’s relevance to the country’s development agenda.
In an interview with Eswatini TV’s Kusile Breakfast Show, UNDP Team Leader; Environment, Climate and Disaster Resilience, Onesimus Muhwezi, and the Chief Economist at the MEPD, Lungile Mndzebele, discussed how the new programme will help the country reduce inequalities and eradicate poverty.
The five-year programme focuses on two main portfolios; Sustainable Inclusive Economic Growth, and Efficient and Participatory Governance.
According to Muhwezi, the Sustainable Inclusive Economic Growth portfolio is aimed at helping the country to reduce inequalities which is responsible for the high poverty levels, currently at 58.9 percent. UNDP will ensure that economic growth will be achieved in a sustainable manner.
“One of the reasons why UNDP is focusing on climate action is that the progress that we are making towards achieving economic growth is reversed by the change in climate,” said Muhwezi. “The drought that we had in 2015/16 and the Tropical Cyclone that we had in 2021 all divert resources from investing in economic infrastructure activities to crisis management and this has been compounded by the COVID situation.”
The focus on the Efficient and Participatory Government is also critical for tacking inequalities within a household, community and country because that is determined by the policies and procedures.
“The effectiveness of institutions is reflected in the service delivery,” he said, adding: “In that respect we see that the Government institutions are making progress towards improving service delivery. A lot of work has been done and more needs to be done.”
Mndzebele alluded to the importance of the CPD towards helping the country achieve the targets of the NDS, also known as Vision 2022. She also spoke about the Government’s strong partnership with UNDP in eradicating poverty in the country adding that small progress has been achieved by reducing poverty from 63 percent in 2007 to 58.9 percent in 2017.
“UNDP is supporting the Government with technical expertise and knowledge to fast track progress towards realizing the national vision,” she said.
She said the Government is determined to ensure that no one is left behind in the Kingdom’s development agenda by working towards reducing inequalities an area where UNDP is instrumental.