New report faults Budget performance in sectors

Monday October 9 2017

Finance minister Matia Kasaija shows a

Finance minister Matia Kasaija shows a briefcase containing the National Budget at Kampala Serena recently. FILE PHOTO 


Kampala. A civil society report on budget performance indicates that more needs to be done across all economic sectors if the National Development Plan II, that is supposed to propel Uganda into the middle income economy by the year 2020, is to be achieved.
The local government, who interface directly with the population on daily basis, is central in budget performance, but always short of resources to sort most of the pressing problems the population face.
“…critical challenges prevail in bringing services closer to the people. Civil Society Organisations (CSO) continue to witness inadequate and poor infrastructure, inadequate staffing at numerous service delivery points, shoddy work and weak accountability structures,” reads the CSOs budget report presented at the Local Government Budget Consultation Workshops last week in Jinja.
Furthermore, the report presented by Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group (CSBAG), stated: “While we recognise concerted efforts to increase citizen participation in the budget process, public participation especially at district level remains limited.”
During the presentation of the CSO Assessment of the Financial Year 2016/17 and proposals for Financial Year 2018/19 to Improve Service Delivery it emerged that the Open Budget Survey, 2015, ranks government efforts to facilitate public participation in the budget process at 23 per cent. This was due to limited provision of comprehensive budget information.
Another CSO presentation by district leaders from Eastern Uganda at the Local Government budget consultative meeting in Jinja recently also showed glaring service delivery gaps despite pockets of commendable work.
The report showed districts in Eastern region struggling with absenteeism of teachers and pupils, medical waste are being badly disposed and low staffing levels. It also became evident that farmers are unable to sell their commodities due to lack of market.
When interviewed, Mr Wilberforce Owori from Tororo, said: “Issues concerning absenteeism of staff in schools, low staffing levels and cases of drugs running out remain our biggest problem.”