Vote Controllers Dodge Budget Hearing

By Thomas S. Kembay

The Deputy Director of Budget Bureau in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MoFED), Tasima Jah has revealed that Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) are dodging this year’s budget hearing.

The Deputy Director made the disclosure at the Miatta Conference Centre following the failure of some MDAs to show up for the budget discussion program.

According to Mr. Jah, the act of MDAs dodging budget discussion had been the method often used by vote controllers to give flimsy excuses for not receiving the right amount of budget allocation for their day-to-day administration.

Government, he said, was using resources in making sure that budget deliberations involved the inputs of all MDAs, but that they have deliberately refused to comply with the process despite they were informed prior to the process.

Mr. Jah urged the MDAs to realize that they were working for Sierra Leoneans and not just for themselves, adding that they are obliged to attend and explain what they have done with the past budget that was allocated to them, and what they intend to do with the 2017 budget and the amount they are expecting.

In their responses, some MDAs referred to the statement of the Deputy Director as provocative, noting that the last time they received government allocation was in the first quarter of 2015.

They alleged that they have not been able to function properly due to inadequate funds in their coffers.