By Francis Phiri
Colleen Zamba is the first born in a family of six Children. She was born to Skeffa Thom Zamba and Felestia Zamba who were both Teachers. Her father was the first Malawi Congress Party-Member of Parliament for Dowa.
Collen did her primary school at Kongwe and Mvera in Dowa before being selected to Lilongwe Girls Secondary School.
She later proceeded to study for a Bachelor of Social Science (Economic) from University of Malawi-Chancellor College in 1985.
She currently holds a Masters in Philosophy Economic Planning obtained in 1989 from University of Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom where she awarded as a best students and a Post Graduate Diploma in Development Policy obtained 1988 from University of Glasgow, Scotland.
Colleen Zamba is a dynamic, energetic and extensively experienced person with over twenty-five years in development work including over fifteen years in senior management at very strategic levels in both National and International Economic Policy Issues and Development work.
She is currently working with Office of the Cabinet and President as a Secretary to the President and Cabinet.
Although she has met resistance from a rigid system and individuals used to misappropriation of Government resources, Zamba has remained focused and unmoved. Her past record at work has always singled her out as the best.
This has been demonstrated by production of results while serving as Permanent Secretary, Advisor to Cabinet and President in Malawi Government, Economic Advisor to Nigeria Government and Zambia Government through the UN systems and Country Manager for the UN Millennium Programme Malawi
She worked as a permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance in Malawi, coordinated partners to respond to disasters-floods in lower shire and refugee’s influx in Mozambique.
Zamba emphasized that she demonstrated outstanding communication skills, including presentation, panellist and preparation for speeches for Presidents, Ministers and RCs
Apart from demonstrating strong analytical and editing enabling effective quality assurance of key corporate products NHDRs MDG Reports, Policy Briefs and African Economic Outlook among other publications, she worked as Country Director in various periods in Zambia and Nigeria.
In August 2004 she worked as a Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Commerce and Industry-Malawi Government. It wasn’t long before she became Country Coordinator for Malawi UN Millennium Project by providing technical advice to Government to start MDG-Based Planning Process.
Collen Zamba has also worked as Special Assistant in the Governor’s office, Reserve Bank of Malawi where she was dealing with financial instruments and financing of Government, managing treasury bills as financing instruments for government and monetary policy operation.
In 1998 she was a Principal Secretary for Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance-Malawi Government where she was coordinating and monitoring the Malawi IMF-World Bank supported economic program.
In 1997 she worked as a Principal Secretary designated as Comptroller of Statutory Corporations responsible for the State Corporation in the office of the President and Cabinet (OPC).
She coordinated and chaired UN-Inter Agency Group on development of the National Development Plan of Zambia and Nigeria that involved cultivating partnership with private sector, civil society and Development Partners Innovation and Judgement.
In Nigeria she spearheaded support to the sub national GDP computation project, a first of its kind in the West Africa region which led to Government mandating states to legally establish Statistical and Planning Agencies.
Colleen Zamba led the UN inter-agency team on integrating Agenda 2030 and 2063 in the 7th National Development Plan as well as led the UN Technical Team in the production of Nigeria Vision 2020 blueprint (represented all development partners in the central working group and 1st National implementation Plan).
Love her or hate her, the woman is simply good! The Malawi Government is in safe hands under her care.