Despite agriculture being the backbone of Uganda’s economy, the sector is expected to suffer budget cuts in the next financial year budget.
Despite agriculture being the backbone of Uganda’s economy, the sector is expected to suffer budget cuts in the next financial year budget. The National Budget Framework Paper for the 2012/2013 financial year shows that the agriculture budget will reduce by 1.2 percent.
It will receive 336 billion shillings compared to 434 billion shillings in 2011/12. The security sector will also see a significant drop in it allocation from 975 billion shillings to 725 billion shillings. According to the budget framework paper, the land, housing and urban development sector will also have its budget slashed from shillings 32 billion to 22 billion.
Keith Muhakanizi, the deputy secretary to the treasury, says the money cut from these sectors will be channeled to key areas that are vital in boosting economic growth. They include energy, mineral development, works and transport, education and health.
Despite its minimal performance the works and transport sector the works and transport sector will receive a boost of shillings 178 billion, bringing it to 1.43 trillion shillings. The education sector’s budgetary allocation will increase from 1.4 trillion shillings to 1.6 trillion shillings while the health sector’s budget will jump from 804 billion shillings to 915 billion shillings.
Sectors with negligible increases or no increases at all include public administration, information and communications technology, social development and parliament amongst others. The National Budget Framework Paper remains a proposal until it is scrutinized by the parliamentary budgetary committee and approved as the budget for the next financial year.
Richard Mugisha, the campaign and advocacy officer of land lobby group Pelum Uganda says such proposed cuts defeats the very meaning of government's plan to modernize agriculture.
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Mugisha says Uganda should fulfill her commitment to the Maputo Protocol which calls on African countries to increase their annual budget for agriculture to 10 percent.
2012/13 national budget