However, Shadow Finance minister Muwanga said Kivumbi says in his minority report: "For the budget committee to identify a huge funding gap of 6.1 trillion to be added to the already exaggerated Resource Envelope of 49.9 trillion Shillings without identifying the sources of revenue renders this exercise an academic trip of no particular practical import to the budget process.”
The Budget Committee of
parliament has proposed an additional 6.1 trillion to the initial national budget
estimate for next financial year, which will bring the figure to 56.1 trillion Shillings.
The proposed additional
funding is contained in the Budget Committee report on the National Budget Framework
Paper for the next financial year 2023/2024. The report was presented to parliament
on Wednesday by committee Vice Chairperson, Wamakuyu Mudimi.
Last year in December, Finance Minister Matia Kasaija tabled before parliament the proposed national
budget for next financial year 2023/2024, projected at 49.98 trillion Shillings,
compared to 48.13 trillion for the current financial year 2022/2023, reflecting
an increase of 1.85 trillion.
Now according to the
Budget Committee report, legislators recommend an additional allocation of 6.12
trillion Shillings to the total national budget to cater for unfunded or
underfunded priorities in different government Ministries, Departments and
recommends 40.8 billion to the Inspectorate of Government (IG) to complete the construction of its Head Office; 192.64 billion to the Parliamentary Commission
for non-wage recurrent shortfall, wage shortfall for MPs and staff, construction
of the Chambers, procurement of vehicles and upgrade of the ICT infrastructure; 38.36 billion for Electoral Commission staff wage enhancement, women council
elections and recruitments in newly created districts and others.
A total of 180 billion
is recommended for the Ministry of Health for wage shortfalls, infrastructural
gaps, renovation and equipping hospitals, upgrade of health centers, and blood
donation mobilization; 177.3 billion for the Ministry of Education to reinstate
budget cuts, recruitment of staff and training examiners; 44.7 billion for Office
of the President for among others patriotism activities, procurement of medals
for awards, and facilitation for newly recruited presidential ambassadors.
The committee also
recommends an additional budget of 5.26 billion allocation to Ministry of
Justice and Constitutional Affairs to enhance staff salary and to compensate war
debt claimants in Teso, Acholi and Lango sub-regions for the loss of livestock
and other properties during the insurgency; 14 billion for Directorate of
Public Prosecution DPP's recruitment and promotion of staff; 1.9 billion for
National Forestry Authority to re-survey and demarcate forest boundaries and
provide tree seedlings.
However, a minority
report authored by Shadow Minister for Finance, Muhammad Muwanga Kivumbi dissents
with the majority budget committee report on the identified funding gap of 6.1
trillion since the source of funds is not identified.
“Government came up
with the Resource Envelope showing the proposed sources of revenue in the
Budget Framework Paper. For the budget committee to identify a huge funding gap
of 6.1 trillion to be added to the already exaggerated Resource Envelope of
49.9 trillion Shillings without identifying the sources of revenue renders this exercise
an academic trip of no particular practical import into the budget process,”
//Cue in: “to simply
Cue out:…report is
Meanwhile, although the
resource envelope for next financial year is proposed to increase by 1.85
trillion according to the Budget framework paper, government says that
discretionary resource envelope reduced by 2.53 trillion from 25.4 trillion to
22. 86 trillion due to the projected increase in the interest obligations and
obligation to settle Bank of Uganda borrowing.
In regard to aggregate
expenditure composition, 32.05 trillion (64.1 percent) of the proposed budget is
to cater for recurrent expenditures while only 17.92 trillion (35.9 percent) of
total expenditure is to cater for development expenditures. Debt related
payments, including domestic arrears represents 37.7 percent of total
Wamakuyu says that the
proposed resource prioritization is very worrying and could indicate that the
country’s fiscal operations may not be sustainable in the long run as debt
related payments continue to take the largest share of the budget.
The proposed 49.98
trillion national budget will be financed through domestic revenue equivalent
to 28.83 trillion, budget support amounting to 2.491 trillion, domestic
borrowing 1.585 trillion, external project support worth 8.04 trillion,
domestic refinancing of 8.798 trillion, and local revenue for local government
(AIA) of 238.5 billion Shillings.
The Budget theme has
been maintained as “Full Monetization of the Ugandan Economy through Commercial
Agriculture, Industrialization, Expanding and Broadening Services, Digital
Transformation and Market Access”.
The government's key
priorities for next financial year are starting the construction of the
Standard Gauge Railway and finalization of the rehabilitation of the Meter
Gauge Railway under the Integrated Transport programme (4.65 trillion);
investing in small-scale solar-powered irrigation as well as addressing climate
change and food security under Agro Industrialization Programme (1.499
trillion) and others.
The other priorities
are constructing power service stations and transmission lines under the
Sustainable Energy Development programme (ugx1.2 trillion) and capitalization of
Uganda Development Bank -UDB and Uganda Development Corporation- UDC to
continue supporting private sector development, recovery and economic
transformation under the Private Sector Development (1.798 trillion).