By Manasse Nyirenda, MANA
Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Joseph Mwanamveka has told Parliament that the construction of 193 houses for people with albinism was on course to enhance their security and welfare.
The Minister was speaking during the presentation of Mid-Year Budget Review Statement at parliament in Lilongwe.
“Government allocated K 60 0million under the Malata and Cement Subsidy Programme for the construction of houses for people with albinism.
“As we speak, 193 beneficiaries, one for each constituency have already been identified to benefit from this initiative and construction works are expected to start soon,” he said.
Mwanamvekha told parliament that during the first half of budget implementation, under the K400 million National Action allocations, supported 89 learners with schools fees.
The learners supported were moved from community day secondary schools to boarding schools to enhance their security.
Mwanamvekha told parliament that the K200 million allocated in the 2019/2020 budget towards Disability Trust Fund has been disbursed and that beneficiaries would be able to access the funds as seed money for small scale business once development of guidelines and regulations was completed.
Addressing the Media after the presentation of the Mid Year Budget which has been revised upwards from K1.74 trillion to K1.84 trillion, the Minister said the government has made several changes taking into account prevailing challenges.
“We have many a number of changes on the revenue side and the expenditure side. On the revenue side changes have been made taking to account the developments. You are aware the demonstrations affected businesses. MRA offices were sealed and could not collect.
“That affected revenue collection and also because some of the user charges we wanted to implement required passing of some legislation. That also delayed a bit on the revenue side.
The budget has taken into account the challenges we were experiencing in the first half, but some have been addressed in the second half for example enhancing efficiency of MRA,” he said.
The Finance Minister Mwanamvekha said on average the revenues were coming down.
The Minister said the challenge was the unforeseen expenditures such as court cases and the fresh elections towards which the revised budget has allocated K29 billion against a K32 billion provisional budget submitted by Malawi Electoral Commission and expect to get the deficit from donors.
He said that all things being equal the revised budget is based on the assumptions that GDP would grow by 7 per cent in 2020 and that inflation would average 8 per cent and the policy rate of 13.5 per cent among others.