THE Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture has again topped 2022/23 budget allocations, which is 19.9 percent of the total budget. In comparison to the Basic Education’s 14.1 billion dollars, the Ministry of Higher Education, Training and Innovation received N$3.3 billion of which N$840 million is for the University of Namibia, N$455 for the University of Science and Technology and N$1.4 billion going towards the Namibia Students Financial Assistance Fund.
Finance Minister, Iipumbu Shiimi when tabling the Appropriation Bill this afternoon said that the Public Safety and Order sector takes up the second highest share of the budget at N$12.6 billion dollars accounting for 17.8 percent of the total budget.
The Judiciary will receive N$369.5 million, while the Anti-Corruption
Commission (ACC) receives N$62.8 million, making it the lowest receiver.
“Specific consideration has been made to ensure that resources are availed for these votes to ensure speedy access to justice and to support the fight against corruption,” Shiimi said.
The Ministry of Health and Social Services will receive N$8.4 billion. Shiimi said the sizable allocation to the health sector reflects elevated funding requirements in continuing the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. “To maximise outcomes given the severely limited resource envelope, the health sector should address inefficiencies and leakages, especially through overpriced services and pharmaceuticals”.
In line with this year’s theme of “Reimaging, a better future for the youth”, Shiimi stressed that Sports, Youth and National Service has been allocated N$330.9 million, which is 20.5 percent higher than the preceding year. He says the budget is to specifically cater for urgent renovations to the Independence Stadium to bring it on a standard to host international football games. Of the total budget, 25.9 percent has been allocated to the economic sector with public Enterprises scooping N$790.7 million.
“An amount of N$175 million, has been allocated to TransNamib to give further impetus to the national logistics hub aspirations through recapitalization of the entity, in partnership with the support of the
Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and DBN,”Shiimi said. Agriculture, Water and Land Reform is allocated N$1.9 billion with specific focus on water infrastructure refurbishment and development program.
Finance will receive N$5.2 billion, while more than 700 million is earmarked for the Road Fund Administration (RFA) for road maintenance during. Regarding sin taxes, as of the 23rd of February 2022, a 340ml can of beer or cider will cost an extra 11 cents, a 750ml bottle of wine will cost an extra 17 cents, a bottle of sparkling wine an extra 76 cents, a bottle of spirits going up by N$4.83, a packet of 20 cigarettes will cost an extra N$1.03, a 25 gram of piped tobacco will cost 37 cents more, and a 23 gram cigar an extra N$6.77. The minister in his speech also said that the domestic economy is projected to grow by 1.2 percent in 2021, lower than the 1.9 percent growth estimated in the Mid-Year Budget Review. “The revision considers the low base effects, the impact of the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the outbreak of the Omicron variant in December 2021,” he stressed.