Increase district funding, ULGA tells Museveni
The Uganda Local Government Association (ULGA), an umbrella association for all local government has wants government to increase its budget allocations to local governments for better service delivery.
This was contained in policy recommendations the district chairpersons presented to President Yoweri Museveni on August 16 at State House Entebbe.
Museveni is the association’s Patron.
The policy recommendations according to ULGA President; Lwengo district chairman George Mutabazi, are intended to reposition local governments for improved service delivery.
ULGA wants government to make changes in the legal and policy framework on decentralization.
To strength decentralization, ULGA wants to institute country wide review and dialogue on decentralization in order to re-empower local governments.
Mutabaazi also told Museveni that local governments need to be consulted before laws that affect them are passed.
The district heads also asked Museveni issue a directive to have their budgets increased to 40% of the national budget from the 12.9% that was allocated to the districts in the previous financial year.
This, according to the ULGA general secretary Gertrude Rose Gamwera will improve service delivery at local government level.
“These funds can be secured by redirecting all programme funding retained by line Ministries, departments and Agencies. For services implemented at local government level” said Gamwera.
Underfunding of the districts came out prominently in the meeting with Mityana district chairman Joseph Luzige wondering why some of the funds meant to be sent down to the districts are retained at the centre.
“The policy of decentralization which is your brain child is continuously being centralized,” Luzige said.
The meeting also discussed ULGA’s partnership with Operation Wealth Creation (OWC).
The partnership is intended to improve service delivery geared towards transforming the livelihood of the local communities.
In the meeting, district leaders asked Museveni to endorse the ULGA-OWC Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of their partnership.
In their argument, local government leaders believe that OWC has can be run effectively when local government leaders are involved.
This, according to the district bosses, will address the challenge of late distribution of planting materials.