Rejection of budget will create problems at ministries
KABUL (PAN): The rejection by the Wolesi Jirga of the fiscal budget for the new year will cause problems to all government institutions and delay the implementation of projects, an official said on Monday.
The budget was approved by the Meshrano Jirga or upper house of Parliament three weeks ago and was then sent to the Wolesi Jirga for approval. But the lower house threw it out on Monday.
The ordinary budget, suggested by finance minister, was 150 billion afghanis ($3.3 billion) and the development budget was 65.7 billion afghanis.
None of the ministries could do carry out their work as there were no official funds, a spokesman for the Ministry of Finance, Aziz Shams, told Pajhwok Afghan News.
For example, he said, the Sardar Mohammad Daud Khan hospital, had asked for a budget to be used in an emergency, but the ministry could not provide the hospital with the money because the budget has not been approved.
Spring and summer seasons were good for implementation of projects, but these projects would be delayed because the budget had been rejected, he said. In winter, some areas where they wanted to carry out projects would be inaccessible, deputy finance minister, Mohammad Jamizada, said.
"One of the main reasons behind non-implementation of projects was a delay in release of funds," he said. Since the ministry had been waiting for approval of budget, no project had so far been put out for bidding, he said.
The Wolesi Jirga rejected the budget with majority of votes. The reasons behind the rejection included, lack of basic projects, that it was 40 percent less compared to last year and a lack of equality between provinces.
The ministry spokesman, Shams, said the budget could not be fair to all provinces as it was based on development issues across the country.
The ordinary budget for last year was about 116 billion afghanis with 99 billion afghanis for development. About 98 percent of the ordinary budget and 40 percent of the development budget was used last year, according to ministry officials.
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