Parliament appropriated 831 billion Shillings for the Parliamentary Commission for the financial year 2021/2022 but available information indicates that the budget was cut by 80 billion Shillings. This is one of the measures undertaken to reorganize government expenditure amidst the tough economic times caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Parliamentary Commission has protested budget cuts to Parliament saying that these have crippled the work
of the House committees.
appropriated 831 billion Shillings for
the Parliamentary Commission for the financial year 2021/2022 but
available information indicates that the budget was cut by 80 billion
Shillings. This is one of the measures undertaken to reorganize
government expenditure amidst the tough economic times caused by the
July, the Ministry of Finance sent out a circular to all accounting
officers, indicating that budget cuts had been effected across the board
to allow the government to generate emergency
financing totalling 600 billion Shillings for the COVID-19 response. The
cuts affected the Office of the Prime Minister, State House, Uganda Aids Commission, National Medical Stores, The Office of the President, Mulago National Referral Hospital, among others.
But the Deputy Speaker of Parliament Anita Among says that the Commission, the top administrative body of the House has now passed a resolution for the Executive
to never tamper with the budgets of Parliament and the Judiciary.
“One of the roles of parliament is appropriation and
if there is anything to change in the budget, it must come back to the House. It
is so disturbing that our committees can’t work. The other role is oversight,
but when you find Finance Ministry cutting off money coming to parliament…it
disturbs. If parliament cannot do an oversight role, then what are we left with…why
are we here?” Among questioned.
She said that salaries for parliament have been
delayed and that committees cannot perform their duties effectively with
the cuts, and insisted that despite the different challenges that came
with the outbreak of COVID-19, the operations of parliament should not
//Cue in; “let’s have respect…
Cue out…be given money.”//
Erute South MP, Jonathan Odur, Kilak North MP, Anthony Akol and Kampala Central MP Muhammad Nsereko accused the
Executive of trying to usurp the powers of Parliament by changing the budget
figures without its knowledge, adding that it is not prudent to freeze, alter or frustrate the budget
of the Parliamentary Commission or revising the budget in any way without the approval of parliament that
appropriates the funds.
//Cue in; “this parliament is…
Cue out…not be good.”//
Government Chief Whip, Thomas Tayebwa said that it
was unfortunate that the work of parliament cannot move smoothly because of the
budget cuts. He pledged that the Executive was to ensure that the situation is
solved despite the different challenges.
//Cue in; “indeed it is…
Cue out…important is communication.”//
The Minister of Information, Chris Baryomunsi said
that the Executive arm has never wished to suppress the work of parliament
since it is important for them to move forward. He however said that the second wave of Covid-19
affected the budgets of the different sectors of government were suppressed so
that more resources are put to fighting coronavirus.