National
CSOs want special committee on secret budget outlay
Publish Date: Jun 01, 2014
CSOs want special committee on secret budget outlay
The Public Finance Bill aims to guide implementation of the activities in the local and national budget processes.
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By Henry Sekanjako and John Odyek

CIVIL society organizations (CSOs) under the body umbrella Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group (CSBAG) have asked government to consider setting up a special committee of eminent persons to scrutinize and monitor government’s classified (Secret) expenditure.

In their analysis of the Public Finance Bill 2012 that is currently before parliament, CSBAG said there was need for government to involve an independent committee to study the expenditure of resources under the classified budget for accountability purposes.

“In the recent past classified expenditure has been used as a basis to misuse public funds. The current provision on the bill is not strong enough to deter misuse of public funds through classified expenditure,” said Julius Mukunda the coordinator CSBAG.

The director programs Uganda Debt Network Julius Mishambi added that; “we are not against this kind of expenditure or saying it should phased out but what we want is to have eminent people like religious leaders to ensure there is accountability”.

According to the Public Finance Bill, classified expenditure is money appropriated in confidence for defence and national security purposes.

Section 20 sub section (2) of bill provides that confidentiality of the defence and national security matters, a budget for classified expenditure shall be presented as a single line item.

Addressing journalists in Kampala, CSBAG also expressed concern over the proposal by the Bill to have the parliament’s committee on budget disbanded saying it would affect parliament’s role on oversight and accountability.

The CSOs want the committee retained to help in scrutiny of wasteful expenditure by government during the budgeting process.

 CSBAG decried the delay by parliament to pass the Bill saying it would guide implementation of the activities in the local and national budget processes, promote public accountability and give guidance on transparent management of oil resources.

They criticized Parliament and government for not adequately assessing the previous budget performance to inform the current budget priorities especially in a situation where local governments report one year after on their performance.

“The sector ministries despite receiving the work plans and performance reports from local governments do not provide any feedback on the reports, which implies that the issues raised in these reports are not addressed and continue to affect service delivery as well as accountability,” said Julius Mishambi.

The passing and implementation of the new Public Finance Bill 2012 hit a hitch as Parliament went on recess without passing it. The Bill seeks to provide for the fiscal and macroeconomic management, provide for multiyear budgeting to cater for long term projects.

The Bill provides for contingency, excess and supplementary funds. It provides for the roles of minister for finance, secretary to the treasury and accounting officers.

The Bill also seeks to repeal the Public Finance and Accountability Act 2003 and the Budget Act 2001 to consolidate them. But MPs have opposed repealing the Budget Act because it would scrap the Parliament budget office which has experts scrutinizing the budget to support Parliament.

Related stories

MPs want separate budget for gov't lab

Local Gov'ts want their share of national budget doubled

Constant budget cuts for UBOS irk MPs

MPs advise CSOs on budget research

Finance, civil society push for better use of budget money

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 digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
14 killed in DR Congo machete attack
THE incursion by the Ugandan rebel group ADF took place overnight in the town of Kampi ya Chui....
Businessman sues UNRA over Entebbe Expressway
A businessman has dragged UNRA to court seeking sh5b in damages for loss of business and the inconvenience over the construction of the Entebbe Expressway....
US Commander of Africa Forces visits
President Yoweri Museveni has said that the main challenge in Somalia today was clan-related issues. The President made the remarks at State House Entebbe in a meeting with the United States of America Commander of Africa Forces, General David Rodriguez....
Museveni hails Uganda-North Korea ties
President Yoweri Museveni describes the North Koreans as friends who have helped Uganda for a long time on visit of one of its leaders....
Slain Unilever boss mourned
Speaker after speaker described Makanga as a smart, classy, humble, respectful, joyful, hardworking man at his funeral in Kampala....
Muntu warns Mafabi, Nabila over media exchanges
ACCORDING to John Kikonyogo, the party spokesperson, Muntu said discussing the issues in the media was affecting the image of the party...
Should the absence of bride price prevent couples from wedding?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter