State House will spend Shs 550 million daily starting July 1, if parliament approves its budget for the 2017/18 financial year, with nearly Shs 13m going to welfare and entertainment alone.
According to the ministerial policy statement signed by the minister for presidency, Esther Mbayo, State House needs a total of Shs 233.228 billion for its different activities in the second year of President Museveni's latest term of office.
A breakdown of the statement indicates that State House will spend Shs 552m daily on nine activities of the 36 budgeted-for items. These include; travel and transport, miscellaneous and other expenses, general expenses, communications, maintenance, staff allowances and staff training.
Others are supplies and services, welfare and entertainment, special meals and drinks, classified expenditure, travels inland and travels abroad and vehicle maintenance.
The statement indicates that Shs 4.707bn has been budgeted for welfare and entertainment, compared to Shs 4.755bn in the financial year ending June 30 this year. This means the president's residence will spend Shs 12.898m on welfare and entertainment daily.
The latest State House budget is down by Shs 48m compared to that of the 2016/17 financial year. Mbayo said this is a result of government's decision to cut all ministerial and government departmental budgets to cater for food procurement for hunger-stricken districts.
State House says its entire budget will cater for some 36 items, including staff salaries, classified expenditure, gratuity expenses, supplies and services. If State House knocked entertainment out of its budget for a year, its budgetary allocation of Shs 4,707,826bn would help plug shortfalls in some sectors such as health promotion, education, and effective communication to the population.
A health sector ministerial policy statement indicates a shortfall in the health ministry budget, which requires Shs 5bn annually for scaling up health promotion and education and effective communication to the population.
The ministry of education and sports ministerial statement indicates that the permanent secretary Alex Kakooza earns Shs 3,768,835 per month. The State House daily entertainment budget can, therefore, pay Kakooza's salary for at least three months.
For the primary teachers at entry level, who earn Shs 250,000, the State House daily entertainment tab could pay four teachers' salaries for a year.
Summary of how Shs 551.508m will be spent daily on nine items
Budget in Billions
Special meals & drinks