Budget: Speaker beseeches MPs to prioritise healthcare and roads

With MPs set to pass the Appropriation Bill, Speaker Anita Among has asked legislators to vote adequate funds to the health and roads sectors.

Infrastructure in the country is currently stressed, with the Katonga bridge giving way and causing massive disruptions for South Western Uganda bound traffic.

“Katonga is cut off, you cannot go to Masaka; the Communities are cut off; the roads must be worked on…the health sector must be worked on,” Speaker Among said during plenary on Tuesday, 16 May 2023.

Hon. Ronald Balimwezo (NUP, Nakawa Division East) said he is a victim of bad roads, urging government to follow in the footsteps of its regional counterparts and take infrastructure seriously.

“I am a victim of bad roads; I lost my leg in an accident due to a pothole, and government is spending over Shs70 million to get me an [aesthetic] leg; if you look at Tanzania, Kenya, they have invested heavily in roads infrastructure,” he said

The projected nearly Shs52 trillion budget is big on loans repayment and recurrent expenditure, raising fears about the actual funds that remains for discretionary appropriation by MPs to different sectors.

With requests flooding from all corners of the country on different concerns locals want addressed, MPs have a lot of opportunity costing to do with a shrinked resource envelope.

The Speaker took issue with Members’ perennial absenteeism, likening it to corruption, and promising stern action against non-complying MPs.