Finance Minister considers austerity measures

Finance Minister Felix Mlusu has expressed doubts on the possibility of adjusting upwards budgetary allocation into different areas despite calls for adjustment.

During Cluster`s meeting, a number of stakeholders asked government to make adjustments to budgetary allocations, and also during Committee of Supply where Members of Parliament are scrutinizing vote by vote appealed for the same.

But speaking to YFM online, Mlusu said government cannot make such adjustments because it is constrained in its resources envelope.

“I kept reminding the Members of Parliament about where we are coming from, our resources envelope is very small, we cannot stretch it any more than is at the moment, but the demands on that small envelope are huge,” Mlusu said.

He added that this is the reason government has failed to fund the construction of two football stadia for private owned Nyasa Big Bullets and Mighty Be Forward Wanderers and the Malata-Cement Subsidy programme saying government wants prioritise crucial deliverables with the little resources.

“Immediately that may not be possible as I have said because our resource envelope is very small but I have assured the honourable members and indeed the august House that we are going to do complete review at mid-year.

Some of the projects that started with the previous government we have had to pend them not that we have abandoned them but we have pended them and going forward will be reviewing each project,” he said.

But Democratic Progressive Party Member of Parliament for Nkhata Bay Central Symon-Vuwa Kaunda said he is surprised that the new administration has decided to scrap off the two DPP pioneered projects yet in the previous budget money was allocated on the same.

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