THE BEST STEP FORWARD THROUGH BUDGET PRIORITIES IN UGANDA USING HUMAN RIGHTS APPROACH
“The preliminary resource envelope for Financial Year 2023/2024 is projected at Shs 49.9 trillion, compared to UGX 48.1 trillion for the Financial Year 2022/2023 reflecting an increase of UGX 1.8 trillion.
Government tabled on 23-12-2022, Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa who presided over the House referred the framework paper to the committee on Budget and other relevant sectoral committees for consideration.
According to the Public Finance Management Act, the Government should table the budget framework paper before Parliament by 31 December 2022, and by 01 February 2023, the House should have approved the budget framework paper.
MPs were, however, concerned that the framework had remained on soft and not hard copy, which affected their perusal of the same. Hon. Nathan Twesigye (NRM, Kashari North County) on Soft copies…
“Last financial year, we fidgeted a lot with the fact that they uploaded it on our Ipads – but you cannot easily read it. The Leader of the Opposition in Parliament, Hon. Mathias Mpuuga, affirmed stating that the last time the minister presented a framework with massive changes.
Looking at the Priorities
To critically tackle Service delivery at Grassroots, Economic Recovery, Climate Change, Health Care.
Budget Process starts in September from the parish, Sub County, District then National. Local government is least financed.
We commend the government through the Ministry of Health for the procurement of medical equipment. However, this is faced with non-functionality of this equipment and lack of competent staff to operate them,”
We have a challenge of debt financing. The biggest portion of our budget is going out to paying back the debts. For example, we have UGX 8.7tn planned to cater for domestic loan financing
Instead of going for these commercial loans, let us go for these long-time loans. A government should not get a loan of 2 years, which is for individuals.
It is noted that financing for Local governments is still very low despite the critical role they play in service delivery. Gov’t needs to address the issue. Understaffing in local gov’ts hindering service delivery:
Local Government Financing 11% at the District level and 89% at the center.
There are still salary discrepancies across all sectors. This needs to be solved. We can’t have people earning different amounts yet doing similar jobs
We already have an issue of the new curriculum. The ministry has a new curriculum and they’re facing a deficit of around UGX 14bn to print teaching materials among others.
The ministry of education should invest in preparing schools on how they are going to take on a new curriculum otherwise, people will do it haphazardly.
There’s no Government of Uganda Free Zone area that is not in a swamp. People, who are licensing, are allowing people to establish buildings in wetlands yet climate change effects are real.
UGX 21tn in Tax revenues could raise to UGX 42tn if Corruption was dealt with. Big businesses are by people in government that evade taxes. Biggest source is PAYE, which is less than what 525 MPs are paid in allowances monthly.
Traffic makes the government lose over UGX 500bn in costs of accidents due to corruption.
- We want to see how the government plans for tourism; value cabin on tourism is high, we need to train our stuff in tourism sector, improve infrastructure such as internet and network within tourism centers so that our tourists can conveniently communicate back home
- Focus should be on Economic recovery
LOSCO thinks the right priorities for this country; one of these is organisation, for example, we need to look for markets for our products
- Government of Uganda should put a cap on borrowing non-concessional loans, ensure prudent debt utilization. For example, only financial and economically viable public investment projects should be approved for financing. There is too much appetite for borrowing in the Ministry of Finance.