Parliament have demanded a progress report regarding the proposed merger of
departments and agencies.
In February 2021, Cabinet approved recommendations for the rationalization of
government Agencies, Commissions and Authorities. The overall objective is to
eliminate structural ambiguities, functional duplication, overlaps, wasteful expenditure
and realize short term and long term savings.
During the plenary session on Tuesday chaired by Deputy Speaker Anita Among,
MPs raised concern that some government entities have relaxed their services in
some areas due to the awaited merger.
David Kabanda, the Kasambya County MP said that even funding to some entities
had been cut and cannot provide the required services to the people. He cited
the Rural Electrification Agency (REA).
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Joseph Ssewungu, the Kalungu West MP said that the government needed to provide
parliament with a definite timeline when the agencies will be merged.
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In his response, Minister of Public Service, Muruli Mukasa said that his
Ministry will study the agencies and later present a report to parliament.
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In May 2021, the Tenth Parliament learnt of a proposed omnibus law by the government
that would facilitate the merger and disbandment of agencies created by Acts of
Parliament and those that are constitutional.
This was carried in a statement by the then Minister of State for Public
Service, David Karubanga who presented on the floor of parliament modalities
for effecting the mergers of selected government agencies, yet most of them are
established by Acts of Parliament.
Karubanga said that the process would have legal, administrative and financial
implications which include amending laws especially for the agencies that were
created by Acts of Parliament and those that are constitutional.
reported that the projected funds that will be spent during the process in the
short term are 988.12 billion Shillings and that the cost-saving items
considered are operational costs including rent and the entire development
The government said that the exercise will require a critical study, analysis
of the mandates, roles, functions, workload and structures of 18 government
ministries and offices and 97 agencies with a view of effecting mergers,
mainstreaming, functional transfers to support improved service delivery.
Parliament also then learnt that a secretariat that had been set up to
coordinate the merger implementation process in two years had come out with a
detailed plan. The first phase (the financial year 2021/2022) would focus on a
comprehensive review of 18 government ministries and 97 agencies that are
affected by the merger, mainstreaming and transfer of functions.
The second phase (the financial year 2022/2023) would focus on the remaining 6
government offices, ministries and 61 agencies that were recommended for
The proposal to merge agencies follows an Internal Security Organization –ISO
report demanded by President Yoweri Museveni for information regarding the
expenditure of ministries and agencies.
The report revealed that a lot of money was being spent on duplication or
overlapping functions of ministries and agencies. ISO then recommended
reforms of merging agencies and disbanding some to cut on wasteful expenditure.
The agencies in question account for 37 percent of the government’s wage bill
and scrapping them would save 1 trillion Shillings a year in salaries.