Today 30th May 2015, Parliament through a special sitting approved Sh 23.9 trillion as total budget for the next financial year 2015/2016. This followed the passing of the Appropriation Bill, 2015 clearing the sh24trillion 2015/16 Budget that will be read on June 11 this year.
Considering that government’s total revenue from both taxes and non-tax revenue is projected to be sh 11.1trillion, it means, government will be able to fund next year’s budget by only 44.5% and the remaining 55.5% of the budget money will come from external and domestic borrowing from the private sector.
This is a decline in government financing of its national budget considering that in the most recent financial years, government has funded more than 50% of its national budget.
The special sitting on Saturday presided over by the Deputy Speaker, Jacob Oulanya, the Minister of Finance Planning and Economic Development, Matia Kasaija presented the budget which was passed. On Friday afternoon 29th May 2015, Parliament approved the Budget estimates of revenue and expenditure for the 2015/2016 financial year.
The total figure of the National Budget for the Financial Year starting July 1,2015 is one trillion shillings less than what had earlier been communicated by the finance ministry. The total development expenditure will be allocated Sh 9.7 trillion, statutory expenditure Sh 7.7trillion and recurrent expenditure Sh 6.4 trillion. Recurrent expenditure is money used in the day to day running of government agencies and development Budget.
In the Budget, Local Governments in the 112 districts will get a total of Sh 2.1 trillion out of which Sh 1.8trillion will be for recurrent expenditure and Sh 334.5b for development expenditure.
In his remarks, while passing the Budget, State Minister Finance, David Bahati said much of the statutory expenditure Budget will be used in repayment of public debts. He added that the money will also be used for pension and gratuity as well as votes for the statutory bodies.
The Passing of the Budget on Saturday afternoon meant that Parliament adhered to the May 31 deadline within which it is supposed to have the budget passed. Unlike in the past when Parliament had a deadline of end of August to approve the budget, the new Public Finance Management Act, requires Parliament to complete the budget process before end of May to avoid delays in its implementation.
The President is scheduled to deliver the State of the Nation Address on Thursday, June 4. The following week on Thursday 11, the Budget Speech will be read.
According to the budget, the biggest portion of the budget of Sh 6.4trillion will go into public debt repayment, Sh 3.2 trillion will go to works and transport sector, and Sh 2.7 trillion to the energy sector. The Education Sector will get Sh 2trillion, Security and Defence will get Sh 1.5trillion, while health will be allocated sh 1.2trillion.The agriculture sector which is the backbone of Uganda’s economy will get only Sh 484.6b.
In 2001, African governments committed themselves to allocating not less than 15% of their national budgets to health. In 2014 through the Malabo declaration, African governments committed to allocating not less than 10% of their national budget to agriculture