Under the training Youth Budget Advocates from the eastern Uganda have developed advocacy road-maps that will be used to influence budget processes and demand for accountability at the local government level.
Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group ( CSBAG ) Policy Specialist, Siragi Magara commended youth for making time for the road-map development exercise and encouraged them to be on the lookout for activities on the budget cycle and focus on raising evidence-based issues while conducting their advocacy activities.
“The Young Budget Advocates groups were formed with the appreciation that young people are conscious and contribute to influencing government to establish and review existing laws and policies for equitable generation, allocation and utilization of taxes. As such, young people’s voices can serve to ensure that leaders are more accountable and in position to fullfil social contracts with citizens,”Siragi Magara explained
Kibuku Youth Budget Advocates chairman John Sigida said they will use the road map to monitor development projects in their districts and monitor district budgets for develop to ensure that there is service delivery.
Kibuku Chief Finance Officer, John Madawa Mbula encouraged the youth to appreciate the value of work and emphasized the importance of a consultative and participatory budget process.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Local Government, Ben Kumumanya recently cautioned district officials to reinstate Parish development Committees to improve the consultative and participatory nature of budgeting.
He also said Article 190 of the constitution of Uganda empowers Districts to develop plans and integrate them with Lower Local Government plans and submit them to the National Planning Authority.
“Section 77 of the Local Government Act empowers districts to formulate, approve and execute budgets as long as the budgets are balanced expenditure priorities must correspond with the revenues,”Madawa said.
Madawa directed the youth to effectively advocate for better service delivery for instance get involved in Local Government Budget conference which involves a range of stakeholders, including the Civil Society, opinion leaders, development partners, sub counties and Heads of Departments.
According Siragi Magara youth Budget Advocates initiative is being implemented under a project dubbed ‘Strengthening Young People’s Influence and voices in Uganda’s budget processes.’
It is currently being implemented by Civil Society Budget Advocacy Group (CSBAG ) in partnership with Action Aid Uganda.
The project seeks to positively influence Local Government leaders as well as leaders from the central government to be more responsive towards young men, women, PwDs and other vulnerable groups’ needs and improve service delivery for citizens.
By Felix Oketcho
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