President Museveni has proposed that the creation of new districts should be halted because the country’s resource envelope cannot accommodate funding for new units.
Museveni made the remarks while meeting the Parliamentary Committee on Local Governments at State House Entebbe.
Museveni said some of the districts were created because of ethnicity and others for geographical reasons like Moyo and Adjumani which are separated by water.
“But some people now want districts for greedy reasons. We can halt creation of districts for some years if we agree. We are spending 40% of the budget on the wage and administrative bills. They can wait till we have more money,” Museveni said.
Currently Uganda has 127 districts, majority of which hardly generate revenue to run their operations.
The committee presented to Museveni a report on the findings on the performance of accounting officers of District Local Governments and Municipal Councils countrywide and irregularities in service delivery to the public.
Museveni advised that politicians and the administrative class should learn from the experience of the NRM, where he said, they use scarce resources to achieve maximum impact.
He said local governments need to prioritise especially because the country has scarce resources.
“Although the budget for local governments has been increased from Shs 5 billion to Shs 3200 billion, it is an illusion to think you can be every where and do everything at the same time,” he said.
He said he agreed with the committee that there is a lot of dishonesty in local governments. Even the little resources sent there, Museveni said, are stolen.
He said he did not support the idea of districts imposing taxes on all manner of things.
“For instance in Lukaya, you tax gonja sellers and mchomo sellers. Why don’t you leave them and collect the annual tax only? Let them make money, they will purchase other goods that are already taxed like alcohol,” Museveni said.