The ruling National Resistance Movement party on Tuesday held a caucus to discuss the relevance and implication of the new introduced taxes in this year’s budget.
The caucus meeting held at parliament and chaired by party chairman President Yoweri Museveni resolved that the new tax that was levied on tourism and the increased tax on water be maintained despite immense public outcry to ensure sustainable development.
The spokesperson of the caucus Evelyn Anite said that it is important for government to generate as much revenue as it can since it will be funding 80 percent of its budget this year and aims at financing the whole of its budget in the long term.
Minister of Finance Maria Kiwanuka announced the reintroduction of the 18 percent Value Added Tax on water and hotel accommodation when she was reading this year’s budget her budget speech. Public reaction deemed the budget unfair to the already pressed Ugandans and a disincentive to the tourism industry.
Anite said that the money from these taxes will generate 72 billion shillings which will be added on the road fund to speed up the construction of major roads in the country.
The caucus also sat to discuss the fate of the 3 permanent secretaries that were accused corruption and abuse of office.
The Permanent secretaries include Pius Bigirimana who was accused of being involved in the misuse of money meant for the Peace and Recovery Development Plan when he was still in the office of the Prime Minister, Stephen Kagoda of Internal Affairs for his involvement in the National ID scandal and Asuman Lukwago of the health ministry for embezzling money meant for the global fund project.
Anite said that the caucus did not decide on the matter saying that they agreed it was wise to first hear from the solicitor general and the secretary to the treasury.
She said that a report from the two officers was already in parliament and would be discussed later today in plenary.