NRM Members of Parliament (MPs) have given government a 30-day ultimatum to merge the different Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies urging that they are just a wastage of tax payers money.
The legislators’ call follows a report by Internal Security Organization (ISO) that was conducted between July and November this year that found out the agencies were wasteful.
The report by ISO came after President Museveni had directed an investigation following a report by Gen Salim Saleh (Rtd), Operation Wealth Creation Chief Coordinator on the numerous agencies and authorities that owe allegiance to Boards as stipulated by Acts of Parliament by which they were created, making it difficult among others for the Executive to effectively supervise service delivery.
Addressing a press conference on Friday at Parliament, the MPs led by Solomon Ssilwanyi, MP Bukhooli Central said all the 119 agencies need to be reviewed.
Ssilwanyi said that the agencies have used billions of monies on travel, leisure, entertainment, foods and drinks singling out Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) as the most extravagant of all agencies and blamed them for using tax payers’ money for “buying sex and going for massage sessions abroad.”
“By now Kagina should be packing her luggage because UNRA is the most extravagant agency, they use tax payers’ money for outings, dance halls and taking girlfriends on trips. In fact, UNRA is the worst spender on entertainment according to last year’s budget,” Ssilwanyi said.
The legislator said that with a tune of Shs 190 billion being wasted by UNRA, the Authority should be restructured back into the Ministry of Works so that the Minister is directly in charge.
David Abala, the Ngora county MP stated that some Authorities have failed government and although evidence of corruption was adduced, it remains on paper as many make calls for review of the agencies.
He further said that it is also unfortunate that some of the Executive Directors of Agencies earn millions of money amidst the challenges that Uganda faces.
Mukoda Julie, the Woman MP Mayuge district wondered how the agencies in total spent Shs 151 billion on fuel alone in one year.
She said that the duplication bof work and services must be stopped especially given with the “terrible services” in the country.
Kinobere Herbert the MP Kibuku pointed to the lack of coordination between mother Ministries and agencies that are supposed to be under their jurisdiction.
He said in many cases the authorities receive more funding than Ministries, and this is crippling services in the country.
Kibuku has called for a merger of these entities for better service delivery as “everything” will be streamlined.
The legislators have promised that once government does not take action within 30 days, they will move a private member’s Bill to that effect.
However, a member of the team directed by the President to study the government structure of agencies and make recommendations has dismissed the MPs’ ultimatum as mere posturing.
Speaking to SoftPower News on condition of anonymity, the official accused MPs of jumping on each and everything in pursuit of political capital.
“This is work in progress. We are studying the agencies and will make recommendations to the President as directed. He, in fact, gave us a deadline. The MPs’ ultimatum is, therefore, uncalled for,” the official said.
“Their utterances are often informed by populist intentions. They are not interested in scientific methods of work nor research to resolve challenges. If they had not read the media reports on ISO findings, would it have ever occured to those MPs that some of the bottlenecks to service delivery are on account of the structure of government that needs to be reviewed?” the official wondered.