HomeLocal NewsBudget consultations begin next week

Budget consultations begin next week

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SPEAKER of the House of Assembly Lovemore Moyo has disclosed that public consultations for next year’s National Budget will be launched next week with Finance minister Tendai Biti expected to present the actual Budget on November 15.

REPORT BY VENERANDA LANGA SENIOR PARLIAMENTARY REPORTER

The countrywide public consultations will be spearheaded by the Budget and Finance Committee chaired by Goromonzi North MP Paddy Zhanda, Moyo told Parliament on Tuesday.

Zhanda, who was said to be out of the country yesterday, could not be reached for comment.

Webber Chinyadza, a member of Zhanda’s committee, said the idea of public consultations was in line with the Public Finance Management Act which required Parliament to hold consultations with people to ensure their views were included in the 2013 National Budget.

“It is an oversight role to ensure that what MPs would present to Parliament with regards to the 2013 National Budget is spoken on behalf of the people,” said Chinyadza.

“In terms of oversight responsibility, we have to go to the people to gather their feelings and observations with respect to budgetary issues.

“Once that information has been gathered, it is presented to Parliament for adoption and becomes a Parliament position in terms of the Budget.”

Chinyadza added: “When the Minister of Finance comes to present his budget, the task of Parliament is to see to what extent he is presenting issues as raised by the man in the streets and other interested group.

“It is a critical function of Parliament to ensure people’s views are taken into consideration when crafting the budget.”

Biti will also do a similar public consultation process on the 2013 Budget.

“The difference is that Biti’s consultation process is on his behalf, but the Parliament exercise is independent and represents the views of the people,” Chinyadza said.

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