Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Members of Parliament have raised concern over the government plan to give an additional 50 billion Shillings to Kampala and Wakiso districts under the Emyooga, a government initiative aimed at wealth creation and employment.
The initiative is part of government strategies to transform Ugandan households from subsistence to market-oriented production. The government has so far allocated 220 billion Shillings to benefit 19 groups in each constituency.
According to the breakdown, each group is entitled to 30 million Shillings and an allocation of 500 million Shillings is set aside for each constituency. However, a move by the government to allocate an additional 50 billion Shillings to Kampala and Wakiso districts has sparked criticism from Members of Parliament.
Many accuse the government of creating unfair competition between the two urban districts and the rest of the country. They were debating a report tabled by Budget Committee chairman Amos Lugolobi on the supplementary request of 3.7 trillion Shillings mostly for a classified budget to the State House and Ministry of Defense.
According to State Minister for Finance David Bahati, the reason they sought extra funding for Kampala and Wakiso is that the two districts have very many young people who need to be supported out of unemployment and underemployment compared to the rest of the country.
However, Bugiri Municipality MP Asuman Basalirwa says there is a problem when the government uses Kampala and Wakiso districts as a classification for the rest of the country.
Mukono South MP Johnson Muyanja Ssenyonga said that the government has unfairly treated the rest of the country by giving special consideration to Kampala and Wakiso district.
Thomas Tayebwa, the MP for Ruhinda North recollects that the government ministers benefited more from the distribution of masks than ordinary Ugandans and fears that even when allocations are made, the targeted beneficiaries might not be able to get the funds.
Busia Municipality MP Geoffrey Macho says that special consideration for the central region contradicts the principle of equal distribution of resources and adds that several places in the country are covered in poverty and need to be equally uplifted.
Cecilia Ogwal, the Dokolo Woman MP said that the distribution of Emyooga, not only in Kampala and Wakiso but in the entire country will cause commotion. At the end of the debate, the Speaker of Parliament indicated that the money should go to the whole country instead of Kampala and Wakiso.