Budget for new ministries questioned

January 22, 2023 4:33 pm

Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

Former Attorney-General and FijiFirst General Secretary Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum is calling on the government to state how it will fund the newly created ministries.

He says the government promised to announce a mini-budget, but this commitment is not fulfilled.

Sayed-Khaiyum says each ministry has been allocated funding from the 2022–2023 budget.
He states the government is talking about the redeployment of funds, but redeployment is done at the end of the financial year or if the money is going to be used for a specific purpose.

“Yet we are not seeing any realignment or the budget estimates to these new ministries that have been created, it’s a fundamental issue: how will the money be allocated.”

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Sayed-Khaiyum adds that any Prime Minister can make changes to the ministries, but what matters most is the funding allocation to each ministry.

Also, he says that if money needs to be reallocated, there should be a mini-budget because audit queries will arise if this is not done.

Sayed-Khaiyum says the Opposition is concerned as this move will create an opaqueness within the financial management of the fund of the government.

The government is expected to make a response to Sayed-Khaiyum.