A strong parliament budget office is needed to analyse and take action with regards to debt strategy as well as budget monitoring.

This is contained in a presentation by Macroeconomic Expert Dr. Omu Kakujaha-Matundu during the 2023–2024 Mid-Year Budget Analysis and Advocacy meeting for MPs.

Dr. Kakujaha-Matundu explained that the aim is to capacitate MPs to hold ministries accountable for failing to execute their duties as per the allocated budgets.

He also questioned the low execution rate of just over 30 and the role of MPs in ensuring adherence to the set threshold.

The MPs advocacy meeting deliberated and reflected on the midterm budget review tabled by Finance and Public Enterprise Minister Iipumbu Shiimi last week and how it will impact the wellbeing of citizens, especially the youth.

Speaker of the National Assembly, Professor Peter Katjavivi, highlighted the importance of the workshop as an opportunity for MPs to understand and align themselves with the country's fiscal path as well as how to address shortcomings in the budget collectively.

UNICEF Representative Samuel Kweku Ocran raised concern about ministries returning money to the Treasury, which he notes impacts the projects that were supposed to be implemented within the budget.

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Celma Ndhikwa