“MP Highlights Government Inefficiency in Budget Implementation”

The government needs to improve its performance in the 2024-2025 financial year, according to independent Member of Parliament Jone Usamate.

Usamate made this statement yesterday while responding to the 2024-2025 National Budget address in Parliament. He highlighted the slow implementation of projects by some ministries and departments, which resulted in underspent budgets.

“Fiji needs the government to do well because you are in the driver’s seat. You determine the way forward,” he said.

The Minister for Finance, Biman Prasad’s reply to Written Question 74 of 2024 on the status of budget usage at the end of June 2024, posted on the Parliament website, indicated the following:
– $42 million was utilized out of the Capital Expenditure budget.
– Only 37 percent of the $2.5 million budgeted for jetty infrastructure was used.
– The Ministry of Local Government’s total execution was at 40 percent by the end of June.
– For the Rice Development budget of $600,000, there was zero utilization.

“This inefficiency not only hampers economic growth but also undermines public trust in government institutions,” Usamate said. “When allocated funds are not utilized effectively, essential services and infrastructure projects are delayed, directly impacting the quality of life of citizens.”

He emphasized that it is the public that suffers from the government’s failure to implement the budget and deliver the outcomes.

“While the Minister for Finance did his job by allocating funds, the question is did the ministers and their executive team led by the Permanent Secretaries effectively deliver these commitments?”

“This is the result you get when merit-based appointments are replaced by political appointments, rewarding those who helped in the campaign,” Usamate added.

Feedback: inoke.rabonu@fijisun.com.fj

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