National, News

MPs press Bak for supplementary budget

By Bida Elly David


The Revitalized Transitional National Legislative Assembly (R-TNLA) has urged the minister of finance to expedite the implementation of the supplementary budget aimed at resolving salary concerns and fulfilling agreement obligations.

In an exclusive interview with No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper, Nathaniel Oyet Pierino, the first deputy speaker at the R-TNLA, expressed grave concern over the consequences of delaying the supplementary budget.

He said that such delays would severely affect the welfare of citizens and hinder the implementation of the agreement.

“He had given us five months from the passage of the budget for the financial year 2023-2024 that he will come with a supplementary budget to address the increment of salaries by 600% and the physical tasks that are required under the roadmap, but the time has elapsed,” Oyet said.

He noted that the National Constitutional Review Commission, the census, the security arrangements, and the activities of the National Election Commission hang in the balance amid Bak’s promises.

He noted that lawmakers are just giving “the benefit of doubt” to see whether the minister will table the supplementary budget immediately when the parliament resumes or else face the consequences.

“The time frame, even for the supplementary budget, has actually elapsed, but we understand the needs for the transitional period and also the plight of our working class,” he said.

Oyet further said they are very concerned about the growing economic difficulties as seen by the skyrocketing prices of commodities and the delays in the payment of the salaries of civil servants and organized forces.

“There is no excuse whatsoever by the executives to say there is no money to cater for services, salaries of the working community, or public servants,” Oyet added

He urged the Ministry of Finance to execute its mandate without any interference from anyone.

“They need to pay the salaries of the public servants and execute the much-needed economic reforms.”

Moreover, he added that the parliament still stands by the word of the Minister of Finance to bring the supplementary budget, saying he has to be accountable in case of failure.

On his part, Changkouth Bichiok, the chairperson of the specialized committee for finance and economic planning at the R-TNLA, said the minister promised to table the supplementary budget in February.

He said this came when the committee summoned the minister two weeks ago to answer questions about delays in the supplementary budget to address the remaining 200% increment in salaries and the roadmap.

“Some important institutions, especially for the election, the National Election Commission, the Political Parties Council, and the issue of unified forces items, were not catered for in the fiscal budget,” he said.

The finance committee chair stated that they initially agreed to put those missed-out items in the supplementary budget, especially when the commissions are reconstituted.

“So, we are still waiting for him to bring it to us. He has not yet tabled it in parliament. I think it’s being discussed by the cabinet, and soon it will be submitted to us,” he continued. “So, this was the information we had from him in our discussion.”

He added that they first want the parliament to get back to business from their Christmas New Year break to look into the matter.

Last year, the parliament voted for a 600% increase in civil servant salaries but the minister of finance rejected the proposal, assuring that the matter would be addressed within a five-month timeframe through the supplementary budget.

As of now, there has been no tangible progress on the minister’s promise, leaving lawmakers uncertain.

The prevailing hyperinflationary climate further complexes the situation, while the implementation of the roadmap remains subtle.

Meanwhile, attempts to reach the Minister of Finance were futile by press time.



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