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Parliament passes Sh72.130t national budget for FY 2024/25

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Simon Kabayo
Simon Kabayohttps://eagle.co.ug
Reporter whose work is detailed

Parliament has passed a Shs72.130 trillion national budget for the Financial Year 2024/25, up from an earlier proposed total of Shs58 trillion which indicates a Shs20 trillion increment from the last financial year budget of Shs52 trillion.

The Ministry of Finance is planning to borrow Shs28.768 trillion from local commercial banks to fund the Shs72.130 trillion national budget. Government has also increased the amount of money it had earlier planned to borrow from the external market from Shs8.905 trillion to now Shs10.977 trillion, which is a Shs2.071 trillion increament.

Government revised its budget from Shs58.34 trillion to Shs72.12 trillion, hours before Parliament was expected to pass the 2024/25 national budget. Of the Shs14.050 trillion increment, it was indicated that Shs30.95 billion will be payment of emoluments of cultural leaders, while Shs25 billion will go towards capitalization of Vision Group.

Government has also proposed to enhance the UPDF to cater for several items like; Shs172 billion for the purchase of food for the soldiers, while Shs230.16 billion will be used for the purchase of equipment for the army and Shs214.62 billion will be used for payment of wages and gratuity by the Ministry of Defence and Veteran Affairs.

The Ministry of Finance has earmarked Shs2.221 trillion for the commencement of the construction of Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and the funds will go towards acquisition of land worth 260 acres in the districts (Tororo -Mayuge), while the funds will also cater for updating the feasibility studies for western and eastern routes and undertaking Environment, Social economic Impact Assessments.

Henry Musasizi, Minister of State for Finance indicated that the revisions to the budget had been authorized by President Yoweri Museveni, with the documents indicating the recurrent expenditure has increased to ShS13.502 trillion up from Shs11.486 trillion, while the development budget is also expected to increase from Shs13.722 trillion to Shs15.585 trillion

The late sitting presided over by Speaker Anita Among also saw the end of the Third Session of the 11th Parliament.

The House concluded the Budget process by passing the Appropriation Bill, 2024 at Bill Third Reading.

The Opposition in their minority report on the 2024/25 Appropriation Bill revealed that Uganda’s public debt has now grown to Shs97.499 trillion, yet there are plans to borrow additional Shs25 trillion to finance the next budget.

Ssemujju who doubles as Shadow Minister for Finance identified wasteful expenditure worth Shs5.485ntrillion that should be removed from the budget, although the appeal was rejected by Parliament.

“The biggest task on our hands as the 11th Parliament, is to significantly reduce the country’s Trillion public debt. This debt has become a big burden to our economy and threatens the very existence of Uganda as a sovereign state. Public debt now stands at 52.7% of our Shs184 trillion GDP. Parliament must therefore reject any measure that seeks to grow the public debt,” said Ssemujju.

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