MPs want separate budget for gov't lab
Publish Date: May 11, 2014
MPs want separate budget for gov't lab
The government analytical lab was commissioned by then-minister of internal affairs Ruhakana Rugunda (left) and then-Vice President Gilbert Bukenya on July 24, 2007
  • mail
  • img

By Umaru Kashaka 

KAMPALA  - The budget committee of parliament has recommended that the process to create a separate Vote (budget) for the Directorate of Government Analytical Laboratory (DGAL) be started by the ministry of finance next financial year to allow it effectively execute its functions.

This was during the Friday’s discussion of the sessional committee on defence report on the macroeconomic plan and indicative budget framework of the defence sector for the financial year 2014/15-2017/2018.

The MPs noted that a separate budget was required because of the uniqueness of DGAL operations which include emergency interventions into incidents that require immediate response.

“The granting of a separate Vote [budget] will lessen the time required to conclude forensic investigations through quick acquisition of laboratory consumables as well as improvement in efficiency of processes,” said the defence committee chairperson and Mubende Woman MP, Benny Namugwanya.

The legislators also recommended that additional funding of over sh5b be provided to help upgrade as well as replace obsolete equipment with modern ones.

“This is an important facility but it saddens to find that many of its scientific machines are broken down due to lack of funds to service them and buy new ones. Government should find this money,” the Nakasongola Woman MP, Margaret Komuhangi said

Recently the director of DGAL Kepher Kateu told legislators that the quantity of available chemicals to undertake timely investigations of forensic and scientific cases has a direct effect on the time suspects are held on remand in prisons.

“Inadequate funds to procure chemicals leads to increased turnaround time, congestion in prisons and delayed administration of justice hence increasing government expenditure,” he explained.

Kateu observed that the laboratory can generate non-tax revenue to a tune of sh10b annually when fully facilitated, while saving government at least sh2b from outsourcing tests to other international laboratories in administration of justice.

“Additional savings of sh1b in feeding and upkeep of suspects on remand can be realized as a result of quick resolution of court cases thus reducing case backlog,” he asserted.

The national analytical laboratory is used in testing of DNA for paternity, in detecting poisons and in measuring amount of heavy metal in the atmosphere, soil and water, among others.

However, despite its existence, Uganda has continued to rely on foreign facilities.

The government early last year sent body samples of the late MP, Cerinah Nebanda, to South Africa, India and Israel to ascertain cause of her death.

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Pope Francis lauds Uganda on refugees
Within two hours of his arrival in Uganda, the pearl of Africa, Pope Francis while making a keynote speech at State House Entebbe, lauded Uganda for ''showing outstanding concern for refugees...
NRM denies ferrying supporters to Museveni rallies
THE NRM deputy spokesperson Ofwono Opondo has refuted reports that the party campaign team ferries supporters to form big crowds during President Yoweri Museveni''s rallies...
EC bans biased voter education ‘topowa’ campaign
The Electoral Commission (EC) had banned what it termed as a biased voter education ‘topowa' campaign....
Below is the Vatican-provided translation of the homily Pope Francis gave during Mass this morning at the campus of the University of Nairobi....
Pope slams rich elite over
Pope Francis lashed out at wealthy minorities who hoard resources at the expense of the poor as he visited a crowded slum Friday in the Kenyan capital....
Pope to clerics: Follow Christ to the Cross
The Pope says that religious leaders need to follow Christ to the Cross during their lives, but then need not fret, for He will take care of the rest....
Is Uganda ready for the pope's visit?
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter