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PSST Ramathan Ggoobi

PSST Ggoobi Cautions MPs on Supplementary Budgets

by Max Pat
posted onSeptember 19, 2022

The Permanent Secretary/Secretary to the Treasury, Ramathan Ggoobi has cautioned Members of Parliament on approving ‘unnecessary’ supplementary budgets.

Supplementary budgets are approved by Parliament to cater for unforeseen demands that may among others result from natural factors, security or health demands. The law allows Parliament to approve a supplementary budget of up to 3 per cent of the appropriated National Budget.

While speaking the MPs on the workshop of committee chairpersons, committee and regional whips at Imperial Golf View Hotel, Entebbe on Sunday, Ggoobi said supplementary budgets distorts the National Budget.

“We need to make the budget more transformative, redistributive and less accommodative. We need to reduce supplementary budgets to restore fiscal discipline. If we don’t stamp out supplementary budgets, we are not going to change anything in this country because it distorts the budget,” Ggoobi said.

Ggoobi added that the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development has deleted the aspect of unfunded priorities in the budget because it is the one fueling supplementary budgets.

“We shall no longer have unfunded priorities in the budget framework. When a priority cannot get resources then it ceases to be a priority. It has to wait for the next financial year,” Ggoobi said as he received applause from the MPs.

While making his closing remarks to mark the closure of the two day workshop which started on Saturday, the Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa lauded the Office of the Leader of Government Business for organizing the workshop, saying such interfaces are a pre-requisite for continuous improvement. He referred to the Parliamentary Committees as the engine of the legislature that need constant trainings to perfect their roles.

“The bulk of the work of Parliament is done in Committees. Therefore, the realization of the Legislature’s vision as a People-centered Parliament is largely hinged on the responsiveness, efficiency and effectiveness of Parliamentary Committees as sub-sets of the House,” Tayebwa said.

Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa and MPs in a group photo after the closure of the workshop
Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa and MPs in a group photo after the closure of the workshop

He urged committee chairpersons and deputies to always provide leadership at all times by actively influencing and guiding Committee undertakings and outputs in compliance with the Rules of Procedure. Tayebwa observed that oftentimes business takes a long time in committees, while some committees have hardly processed annual reports of the entities under their purview. He attributed the delay to limited prioritization and work methods.

“I urge you Chairpersons to be alive to the time frames for processing business as prescribed by the law, the Rules of Procedure and instructions by the Presiding Officer and deliberately ensure timely processing of business referred to your committees,” he said.

On the roles of committee and regional whips, the Deputy Speaker said an effective whipping system is a precondition for the success of a legislature.

“I therefore urge all whips to effectively play their role in mobilizing members and tracking their attendance and participation in Parliamentary work,” he said.

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