Parliament has asked government for an extra Shs3.4 billion to cater for wages for the new MPs that will come to Parliament in the newly-created municipalities and districts.
Effective July 1, new districts such as Bugweri, Kasanda, Kapelebyong, Kwania, Nabilatuk and Kikuube will come into effect alongside new municipalities such as Sheema, Ibanda, Kotido, Nebbi and Buikwe, necessitating new MPs to represent them.
And now the chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Mr Jacob Oboth Oboth, says there is no money for the new MPs, arguing that Parliament’s Shs483.6b budget for the current financial year was slashed and only Shs318.4 billion was released.
Mr Oboth says the parliamentary commission has budgeted for Shs459.60 billion, of which Shs86.93 billion will go to wages, Shs305.76 billion for non-wages and Shs67b for development.
The committee has also asked government for an additional Shs4.2 billion to strengthen the department of research, the clerk’s office and the office of the Leader of the Opposition.
Parliament already has 454 MPs, with the number expected to grow in 2019 when other newly created districts become operational.
The Ministry of Finance has time and again complained about the endless splitting of local governments, which continues to strain the treasury.
The Ministry’s Permanent Secretary Keith Muhakanizi recently told Parliament that there were no sufficient resources to fund elections for the newly created districts.