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Taxpayers To Spend Shs2.5bn On MPs’ Food

The Parliamentary Commission is set to sign a contract with one service provider to provide food for MPs at a cost of Shs2.51bn.

The details are contained in a bid notice signed by clerk to Parliament, Adolf Mwesige in which the current operator of the parliament canteen has had their contract renewed.

According to the bid notice, a buffet for each MP will be charged Shs13,983 and with the 11th Parliament having 556 MPs including ex officious, this would bring the annual expenditure to Shs2.51bn and the sum excludes weekends.

However, there were some bidders who failed to get hands on the contract like Bulondo’s Apartments Ltd who cited a wrong power of attorney.

Food Platz Restaurant and Takeaway Ltd was edged out of the contract for not attaching bid security and failed to submit audited books of accounts in their bid documents.

Kyrstal Concepts Ltd had its bid thrown out for engaging in fraudulent practices of misrepresentation of facts in order to influence the procurement process especially submitting a fake NSSF certificate.

The other bidder Wombo Food House Ltd had their bid rejected on grounds of submitting substandard documents.

However, it is worth noting that Parliament canteen will also provide lunch for its staff at Shs10,000 but these will have to pay cash.

Further, Parliament also provides a working tea to MPs and witnesses when they appear before Committees in each sitting and this includes tea and snacks.   

The decision to provide food for the MPs joins the cocktail of entitlements including the iPads Parliament procured at Shs3Bn after issuing each MP with Shs200M to purchase cars.

At the end of every month, each MP is assured of Shs6.1 million in salary, Shs6.5M in housing allowance, Shs17.03M constituency support fee  and a town running fee of Shs1.945 Million. 

The MPs are also gifted between Shs10.3m to Shs31m depending on the location of the constituency in fuel allowance and coupled with allowances for attending committees and plenary, the MPs walk away with Shs41.878 Million as lowest and Shs62.578 Million at highest end.

Parliament also allocated Shs60M for burial of MPs and in each year, five MPs are budgeted for. The MPs and their immediate family members have health insurance paid by tax payers and the MPs can seek their medical treatment with either AAR Health Services, International Medical Link or Sanlam Life Insurance. According to this contract, Shs2M is charged for MPs above 70years, while MPs below 70years are charged Shs1.2M monthly. The MPs also earn Shs2.4m per diem when they travel abroad and Shs450,000 travel allowance inland.

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