Museveni makes case for heavy defense spending

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Museveni has forcefully made the case for heavy security and infrastructure spending/Photo Credit/theeastafrican

 

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has defended the huge budgetary allocations to the transport and security sectors in the financial year 2015/2016 financial year budget presented on Thursday by the country’s Finance Minister Matia Kasaija.

While giving his remarks on the 24 trillion Shillings Budget, President Museveni advised the public to take a holistic view of the budget rather than a fragmented one.

He added that when government allocates large sums of money to the transport sector to enable road construction, it contributes to Agricultural growth.

Museveni also defended the money spent on defence and security saying that without security, all investments in the country are at stake.

In the 2015/2016 financial year budget, the Works and Transport sector has taken the biggest chunk of the budget with 3.328trillion Shillings while Security has been allocated 1.632trillion Shillings.

Allocation to other critical sectors such as Agriculture sector stood at only 479.96billion Shillings, Education 2.029trillion, Health 1.270 trillion. At the budget reading, President Yoweri Museveni also launched the second National Development Plan (2015/2016-2019/2020).

He noted that by the end of the second NDP, Uganda will have graduated from the least developed country to a lower middle income status saying that by 2020 Uganda will have surpassed the average of 1000 dollars per capita from the current 787 dollars He added that by 2040, it is estimated that the country will have achieved 9000 dollars per capita.

Finance Minister Matia Kasaija assessed the 1st National Development Plan (NDP I) saying that under the plan, the country has registered enormous achievements citing a drop in poverty from 24.3% in 2009/2010 to the current 19.7%.

He also cited an increase in the income per capita from 665 US dollars to 788 US dollars in the first four years of NDP I. On Human development indicators, Finance Minister Kasaija said that NDP I registered positive developments such as improvements in life expectancy at birth from 51.5 years in financial year 2009/2010 to 54.5 years in 2011/2012.

Finance Minister Kasaija noted that the launched National Development Plan II is to guide the country’s efforts in taking advantage of regional and global development opportunities directed at attaining the Uganda Vision 2040.

He said that the plan is to also serve as a point of reference to inform all planning processes in the country.The strategic focus of NDP II is to attain and sustain rapid growth with value addition through industrialization or light manufacturing and taking advantage of the potential demographic dividend.