UNBS team fails to defend budget, sent away

The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has failed to defend their budget item of Shs3.363 billion allocated for the general use of goods and services.

In a session held on Wednesday, 20 March 2024, UNBS led by Acting Executive Director, Daniel Nangalama, presented the Ministerial Policy Statement and Budget Estimates for the fiscal year 2024/2025 to the Committee on Tourism, Trade and Industry.

However, the presentation left legislators asking more questions than the entity could answer.

Hon. Mwine Mpaka, the chairperson of the committee, expressed dissatisfaction with the UNBS team's inability to defend key budget items, particularly the Shs3.363 billion allocated for the general use of goods and services, as well as the Shs2.7 billion allocated for travel and transport expenses.
"All they can tell you is that we need this amount of money for maintenance, we need this amount of money for research but when you tell them to break down this budget, none of the agencies can do this. Most of them have been requesting for more time," Mwine Mpaka said.

Mwine Mpaka asked the UNBS team if they required additional time to provide a detailed breakdown of the budget allocations.

AUDIO Mwine Mpaka

Nangalama and the UNBS team agreed to revisit the budget and return with a comprehensive explanation.
Bwamba County Member of Parliament, Hon. Richard Gafabusa, echoed Mwine Mpaka's sentiments, emphasising that failure to defend the budget jeopardises the committee's ability to present it before the House.
 "If they cannot defend their budget, we cannot do it for them," Gaffabusa asserted, underlining the importance of accountability in budgetary matters.

AUDIO Gafabusa

Buhweju County MP, Hon. Francis Mwijukye, asked why several entities were struggling to defend their budgets. He wondered if it was the shift from sector to programme budgeting that was giving the entities ‘headache’.