Ugandan parliamentarians have threatened to block the education ministry budget if key sector areas remain unfunded.
The lawmakers sitting on parliament’s education committee made this threat on Wednesday while meeting officials from the ministry.
Education ministry officials led by Minister Janet Museveni were appearing before the committee chaired by Mbale Woman MP Connie Nakayenze. The minister was accompanied by her junior colleagues, John Chrysostom Muyingo for higher education and Charles Bakabulindi for sports.
MP Nakayenze notified the ministers that her committee had resolved not to approve the sector budget unless funds are availed for the students’ loan scheme, recruitment of science teachers for secondary schools and inspection of schools among others.
According to the Ministry of Education and Sports ministerial policy statement, there is a funding shortfall of 18 billion Shillings needed for the next cohort of students under the Students’ Loan Scheme.
This is in addition to recruitment of 2,000 science teachers for secondary schools that also requires 18 billion Shillings, construction of 100 primary schools costed at 49.1 billion and 20 secondary schools in sub-counties without any government-aided secondary school costed at 9.4 billion Shillings.
Legislators also tasked the minister on the stagnating staffing levels of universities below 50% on average of their establishment. According to the education sector budget estimates, 10 billion Shillings required to improve on staffing levels in public universities is not provided.