Minister Plans Major Reforms in Budget Execution
By Kitab A Unango
Finance and Planning Minister Salvatore Garang Mabiordit plans to combat indiscipline practices in the management of the next 2019/2020 budget expenditures.
Mabiordit said he will adhere to Public Procurement and Disposal Regulations to deal with the current weak procurement practices and lack of scale of preference to bring discipline in the country’s budget management.
“We have weak procurement practices, expenditures are not properly prioritized. We shall adhere to the Public Procurement and Disposal of Assets Act 2018. This will help to improve procurement practices and bring some discipline to our expenditures,” Mabiordit said on Monday when he read the speech on Monday.
The 2019/2020 fiscal budget was tabled on Monday, nearly three weeks after MPs blocked it over unpaid civil servants’ salaries.
Mabiordit disclosed that his ministry will make sure spending agencies’ plans were geared towards national development of the country in the next financial year.
“The Ministry of Finance has also ensured that the fiscal year 2019/2020 budget is based on agency plans aligned to the National Development Strategy,” he added.
The minister said despite the marginal improvement of the country’s economy; certain factors remained challenging to its progress. He said were all in crude oil prices, the ongoing conflict and the failure to diversify economy contributed to the economic situation.
“Our economy has improved marginally but continues to be extremely challenging. The economic and budgetary challenges we face today are largely a result of external shock, particularly the fall in the oil prices in 2014. But the difficulties are severely aggravated by the conflict and its economic effects,” he explained.
“Moreover, our failure to moderate the expenditures, build up reserves and diversify the economy has created further challenges. We also neglected to develop our capacity to mobilize domestic revenues,” Mabiordit said.
The Finance Minister pledged to reform the financial system of the country despite its complexity and resistance by some individuals.
“We are committed to reforms. Although it is painful, and will continue to face resistance, there are no other ways,” he said.
“Without reforms, we will not place our country on the road to prosperity and development, toward fulfilling the hope that many people had for South Sudan at independence,” he said.