This afternoon, the Finance Minister Matia Kashaija is expected to deliver the budget speech for the coming financial year to the nation and parliament. This is a special year for the budget given that it represents a culture of resignation among policy and law makers on the budgeting process. The Minister will this afternoon read a national budget that was passed in the House without being debated.
We ask, have legislators and policy makers accepted the Museveni and NRM norm of unplanned development and expenditure in Uganda?
Every single year, it has been the tradition to read a budget and make appropriations to various ministries and departments from the consolidated fund. However, it is true that this budgeting process is far from what actually happens. There are many incidences of crush expenditures and requests for supplementary budgets especially from State House which seems to be the proxy holder of the lion’s share in the national expenditure.
This morning, Hon. Akol Anthony has commented that “Agriculture has suffered in this budget and that’s bad for this country. MPs have been giving this alarm for many years and government ignored these sectors, they have just realized there importance now.”
Therefore as we head into the Budget speech this afternoon, a few things are sure to happen. We expect to hear government pronouncements of new or revised taxes on certain sectors. We also shall hear of tax holidays granted to certain investors. We shall have more announcements of increased domestic and international borrowing coupled with updates of our rising total national debt.
Above all this, when Matia Kashaija finishes his speech, he will usher Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to the podium for him to brainwash Ugandans about the growing economy and how his band of 1986 has done this country a favour.