YUMBE. Yumbe district council has approved a budget estimate of shs79.7 billion for 2020/2021 financial year.

This represents 97 per cent increase from the district budget for the financial year 2019/2020.

While reading the budget on Thursday, Mr Saidi Aniku, the district secretary for finance said the increase was mainly because of the interventions by both the central government and development partners on strengthening service delivery to both the host and the refugee population through various programs.

He said the sources of funding include; local revenue representing 1 per cent, 94 per cent government transfers and external financing which stands at 5 per cent.

In the allocation, the education sector scooped much of the budget where shs21.9bn was allocated, roads and engineering came second with shs17bn followed by production and marketing with shs13.5bn, natural resources parted with shs3.2bn, administration scooped shs3.9bn, the water department took shs2.9bn, community services was allocated shs1.2bn.

Meanwhile statutory bodies got shs883m followed by the finance sector with shs374m, planning unit got shs165m, trade and industry received shs155m while internal audit was the least sector with shs86m.

"These figures we have approved are not final because the final indicative planning figures (IPFs) to be received will come from the government, development partners and other sources. For that matter, these figures may change at any time so, it calls for us to also adjust accordingly in case it happens," he said.

Mr Alli Drasi, the councillor representing Kululu sub-county said this time, the technical team has tried to improve with exception of few areas which need to be corrected.

"We can this time call it a budget but what I’m appealing for is, in the implementation of this budget, transparency must be ensured so that what we have planned for the people must reach them," he said.

Mr Toah Sebbi, the councillor for Yumbe town council said the approved budget will be a good one if all stakeholders own it. He said once it is not owned, it will be a bad budget.

Sebbi added that all the conflicts councillors were trying to develop with the executive were due to technical errors.

"We had a plan of not approving this budget because of the unpaid emoluments but we have the good heart for our people. So, for this budget to run well, the chief administrative officer needs to guide the district executive committee (DEC) in making decisions very well," he said.

"When the budget committee came to scrutinize the budget, our interest was how our allowances shall be paid. We have almost worked for a full year without being paid and how long will this drag us since September 2019 up to date? Ms Charity Farida, the district speaker asked.

She said the councillors committed themselves to approve the budget and they are now calling for an end to this saga as it has been catered for in the budget.

Mr Innocent Asaba, the Yumbe chief administrative officer (CAO) pledged to do his best with the team by exercising professionalism in implementing the budget and give feed back to the council as regularly as possible.

"We shall be very transparent and engage all the committee, DEC and other standing committees and update you on the implementation of this budget but where we have challenges, we shall update you regularly", Asaba promised.