The opposition Forum for Democratic Change, FDC Party leadership has advised all Ugandans to critically examine the national budget.
On Friday, May 20th 2022, Parliament passed the next financial year’s budget totalling Shs 48 trillion.
However, Hon Ssemujju Nganda the FDC spokesperson says the Budget does not offer immediate solutions to the rising cost of living in the country.
“Taxes on essential goods such as fuel and raw materials were maintained. It announced no subsidy on critical items such as soap, paraffin, cooking oil and fuel. This means fuel prices will continue going up until the Almighty Allah brings them down,” says Ssemujju.
While addressing the Party’s weekly press conference at Najjanankumbi on Monday, Hon Ssemujju said that of importance to note, is the reckless borrowing by the president to finance his government’s luxurious spending.
He explains that of the Shs 48 trillion budget, Shs 16.3 trillion has been reserved for debt repayment.
“The Shs 16.3 debt repayment amount includes over Shs 5 trillion which is interest on money borrowed. Please note that next financial year, we will pay interest on money borrowed from local banks to about Shs 5 trillion. Interest on treasury bonds per year is now Shs 4.1 trillion and on treasury bills is Shs 583 billion,” he said.
He added that interest on money borrowed from outside the country is Shs 871 billion. The principal loan repayment on money borrowed outside is Shs 2.4 trillion.
“We are also required to pay Shs 137 billion commitment fees on money borrowed but delayed to use. Mr Museveni owes the country an explanation. Because as all this is taking place, our total debt as a country has reached Shs 73.5 trillion. Of this Shs 45.7 trillion is external debt and Shs 27.8 trillion is domestic debt,” says the party spokesperson.
Ssemujju says that this debt of Shs 73.5 trillion doesn’t include arrears which today stand at Shs 4.1 trillion. Arrears means money owed to people who have supplied the government.
“It also doesn’t include guarantees to private people who have borrowed. Please understand that there are private companies that have been guaranteed. Museveni has committed the country to pay to incase these private companies default. This is what they call contingency liability which today stands at Shs 160 trillion. We are a country in crisis,” Ssemujju said.