Monday, April 19We Break the News

UGANDA: MPs drop request for funding new cities

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Members of Parliament have blocked a motion for a resolution of Parliament authorizing the ministry of Finance to re-allocate funds for the operation of cities and Terego district.

The legislators argued that it would be wrong to allow the minister to re- allocate resources for the cities yet they lack the legal regime that authorizes their operation.

The 15 new cities that were recently approved by Parliament are; Masaka, Jinja, Mbarara, Mbale, Nakasongola, Kabale, Moroto, Soroti, Lira, Arua, Gulu, Hoima, Wakiso, Entebbe and Fort portal.

Out of the 15 new Cities, 10 became operational on the 1st of July 2020 with others expected to start in the subsequent coming years.

But for these new cities to get resources, legally the ministry of Finance has to be authorized by Parliament to re-allocate resources for the operationalization of these new units.

But in an attempt to seek Parliament’s authorization, the state minister for Economic Planning David Bahati was blocked by legislators who raised legal loopholes in the request.

Bahati said Arua city was set to receive Shs 26bn, Mbarara city Shs 43bn, Fort Portal Shs 21bn, Jinja Shs 35bn, Mbale Shs 42bn and Gulu 18bn.

The MPs said there is new no legal framework for the operationalization of these cities.

They wondered how resources can be re-allocated to the new cities yet the Ministry of Local Government has not yet dissolved the municipalities that were elevated to a city status.

The legislators said there should be an amendment in the Appropriation Bill for the resources to be re-allocated.

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