Hengari urges govt to consider funding bill for constituency development

Stefanus Nashama

Popular Democratic Movement Parliamentarian, Inna Hengari, has proposed for the government to thoroughly consider the bill concerning funding for regional and constituency development.

The proposal is also directed to Erastus Uutoni, the Minister of Urban and Rural Development.

Speaking in Parliament on Tuesday, Hengari stressed the need to rectify the oversight regarding regional and constituency councillors, who are democratically elected by their constituents.

“Regional and constituency councillors deserve a more significant role in the allocation of funds dedicated to development projects within their respective constituencies,” she said.

Last month, Minister Uutoni introduced the regional and constituency development fund bill to the National Assembly for other members to comment.

The bill, according to Uutoni’s presentation, aims to create a platform that can provide financial assistance for initiatives concerning regional and constituency developments, which includes local authority areas.

It also addresses the financial constraints faced by regional councils in carrying out their mandates.

Motivating her contribution, Hengari stressed that while the initial impression of the bill suggests progressiveness, a closer examination reveals a disproportionate allocation, with more funds directed towards the fund’s operation rather than actual service delivery.

This, she said, undermines the intended goal of decentralising resources to the grassroots.At the same time, the parliamentarian reiterated the necessity for a balanced and effective utilisation of funds to overcome the circumstances surrounding the matter.

Regional and constituency development funds have been an issue in the country, especially with councillors finding it hard to meet the basic demands of the people at the grassroots level.

The matter has also been part of discussions in the National Council, where representatives from each region sit to raise issues in their respective regions.

Hengari believes there is a need to thoroughly consider the bill for enhancement before a final decision is made.

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