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MPs Task Gov’t to Allocate UGX 110bn for New Town Councils, Sub-Counties

The committee chaired by Aringa North MP Godfrey Onzima notes that no budget provision for wages, non-wage and Development for the new town councils and sub-counties has been availed apart from an earlier 50 million shillings that was released as start-up funds to only 100 town councils.
Parliament’s Public Service and Local Government Committee has tasked government to allocate 110 billion shillings for operationalisation of new town councils and sub-counties. 

In the committee’s report to parliament on the sector budget for the coming financial year accessed by Uganda Radio Network, the 203 New Town councils and 198 Sub-counties that were created are not operating with some having no staff. 

The committee chaired by Aringa North MP Godfrey Onzima notes that no budget provision for wages, non-wage and Development for the new town councils and sub-counties has been availed apart from an earlier 50 million shillings that was released as start-up funds to only 100 town councils. 

“Lack of full operationalization of these administrative units creates a number of problems. Often times they are neglected in terms of development by the mother units since they are perceived to be independent, the political leaders from such new units are treated with suspicion and pressured to go to their newly created areas. Some of these newly created units are already receiving some funds yet without political and administrative staff in place,” reads part of the committee report. 

The committee says that operationalization of the sub-counties and town councils require 29.8 billion and 80.6 billion shillings respectively. 

Meanwhile, the committee also observed inadequate staffing of Local Governments recommending that government provides 55.05 billion shillings for the recruitment in critical positions citing Heads of Departments that require Shillings 16.74 billion, Sub-County Chiefs or Town Clerks requiring Shillings 11.62 billion and Parish Chiefs Shillings 26.69 billion. 

The Committee observes that much as the Local Governments staffing levels have improved to average of 54 percent and 46 percent for both Districts and Municipal Councils respectively, Local Governments still remain constrained by shortages of Staff, and that this is largely attributed to inadequate funding for staff recruitment for critical positions like Head of Departments like in Procurement units, Internal Audit units, Sub-county Chiefs, Town Clerks, Parish Chiefs and Principal Human Resource Officers. 

Onzima says that with staff shortages, it is difficult to ensure optimum delivery of services by Local Governments.  

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