By Charles Tembo

FINANCE minister Situmbeko Musokotwane has reiterated his call for ministries, provinces and spending agencies to ensure funds are absorbed and utilised on budgeted projects and programmes.

And Dr Musokotwane will this Thursday host the first quarter briefing on economic affairs on at the Mulungushi International Conference Centre.

This is according to a statement issued by Secretary to the Treasury Felix Nkulukusa.
Nkulukusa said Ministry of Finance and National Planning has continued to release funds consistent with the programmes approved in the 2022 national budget.

“During the past week, the government released funds to finance developmental programmes and public service delivery. In this regard, K543.4 million was disbursed in the course of the week for procurement of drugs and medical supplies in various public health institutions (Note that in February 2022, we released K650 million for procurement of drugs and medical supplies). In the past week we released K67 million for hospital operations. The Treasury also released K355.4 million to the Public Service Pension Fund to facilitate payment of dues to retirees under this pension scheme,” explained Nkulukusa. “Further, K169.3 million was released to facilitate the on-going implementation of the Social Cash Transfer Programme. With regard to agriculture subsidies, the Treasury released K100 million under the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) to pay arrears to suppliers of fertiliser and seed for the current season. In order to remain on course with our strategy of reducing the country’s indebtedness and ensure fiscal sustainability in due course, the government released K97 million to help liquidate outstanding liabilities for previously consumed goods and services under various line ministries, provinces and agencies.”

He said the Treasury also released K805 million in the course of the past week to facilitate the implementation of projects under the Constituency Development Fund (CDF).

“We further released K694.5 million for various projects and general government operations. We reiterate the call by the Minister of Finance and National Planning Dr Situmbeko Musokotwane, MP, for ministries, provinces and agencies to ensure that funds are absorbed and utilised on budgeted projects and programmes – in a timely, efficient and effective manner in order to achieve the government’s set transformational objectives outlined in the 2022 National Budget,” Nkulukusa said. “As announced by the minister during the delivery of a ministerial Statement on the newly developed country-wide data collection tool in Parliament last Friday, the Ministry of Finance and National Planning will embark on a countrywide data collection programme to ensure evidence-based monitoring and tracking of budgetary spending targets as they compare with actual deliverables on the ground.”
He said Dr Musokotwane would host the first quarter briefing on economic affairs this Thursday, at Mulungushi International Conference Centre.

“The occasion will be used to discuss multi-sectoral developmental issues. In addition to other on-going efforts, the minister would feature on a community radio programme in Mongu, Western Province, on Friday, 8th April, 2022, to discuss developmental affairs with the local community via the radio channel,” said Nkulukusa.


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