There was visible relief and jubilation from government benches whose members stood up in celebration after Speaker of Parliament Catherine Gotani Hara declared that the Tonse Alliance’s first national budget presented by Minister of Finance Felix Mlusu on September 4, 2020 had passed after members approved it.
Leader of the House, Richard Chimwendo-Banda said following the passing of the Appropriation Act, Treasury can now raise and spend money and the Tonse Alliance led government can deliver its services to the people for transformational development agenda.
Chimwendo Banda, who is also Minister of Homeland Security, said the government will now use the fiscal plane to achieve the desired goals and objective.
“For now, we are happy that we now have a budget, Malawians can smile; services have to be provided. At least we’ll have fertilizer that has to be sold to farmers at a cheaper price, medicine that has to be available, our teachers get paid.
“It’s just an exciting time for us; we are happy members did give in all what they could. It has been a wonderful day,” Chimwendo-Banda said squealing with excitement.
Chimwendo Banda said the outlined programmes in the budget will ensure that one of the key components of the Tonse manifesto—the creation of one million jobs—materialises.
But having Parliament pass the Appropriation Act to authorise spending is one thing and indeed implementing the same to the letter is a different ball game altogether.
Opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokesperson of Finance in Parliament Joseph Mwanamvekha said he was pleased with the vigour the opposition had shown in debating the budget and they would continue their oversight role during its implementation.
The former government purse keeper said that implementation is critical because that is what will ensure the trickle-down effect of the allocated resources.
Development expenditure is projected at K511.2 billion, consisting of K100.9 billion for domestically financed projects and K410.3 billion for foreign financed projects.
The budget has a fiscal deficit of K754.8 billion, which is expected to be financed by foreign borrowing amounting to K224.8 billion and K530.1 billion from domestic borrowing.
The fiscal plan is banking on domestic tax collections from Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) and non-tax revenue.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :