Dar es Salaam — The government is raising the budget for the President's Office (Regional Administration and Local Government (PO-RALG) by Sh673 billion for the next financial year in efforts to bolster the delivery of social services, as well as rehabilitating rural and urban roads.
The minister of State in PO-RALG, Ms Ummy Mwalimu, asked Parliament yesterday to approve a total of Sh7.683 trillion for her ministry's 2021/22 financial year. The amount is Sh673 billion more than the Sh7.01 trillion approved during the 2020/21 financial year.
The money, Ms Mwalimu said, would be spent in six priority areas, including strengthening primary health-care, improving early, primary and secondary education, and construction and rehabilitation of rural and urban roads.
Part of the money would also be used to economically empower the people, strengthen good governance, resources supervision and building an enabling environment for doing business, and industrial investment in urban and rural areas.
According to the minister, Sh4.728 trillion is for recurrent expenditure, about Sh3.972 trillion of which will be used to pay salaries, and Sh755.859 billion for 'Other Charges.'
"Sh2.955 trillion has been requested for implementation of development projects, out of which Sh1.676 trillion will be sourced domestically, while Sh1.279 billion will be obtained from foreign sources," she said.
"In recognizing the country's requirement of teachers in primary and secondary schools, the government has continued to recruit teachers through RALG. As of February 2021, some 4,700 primary school and 3,300 secondary school teachers had been recruited, while processes are being finalised to employ another 6,734 teachers," she said.
She named specific areas of budget implementation as: Sh60.50 billion for construction of 121 new health-care centres in LGAs, and completing 15 others whose implementation started in the 2019/20 fiscal year at a cost of Sh15.60 billion.
She said Sh55.70 billion will be used for the construction of 68 council hospitals whose first phase started in the 2018/19 fiscal year. These include the Uhuru Hospital in Chamwino District, Dodoma.
"Sh11.4 billion in domestic funds will be used to implement the second phase of building 27 hospitals whose construction started in the 2019/20 fiscal year, as well as four others. Sh14 billion in domestic funds will go into constructing 28 new hospitals in councils that lack such government facilities," she said.
Sh12.30 billion will be used to purchase medical equipment for 31 hospitals that are in the second phase. Sh38.15 billion has been allocated for completing construction of 763 dispensary sheds which whose construction was started by citizens in electoral constituencies.
Ms Mwalimu said Sh40 billion will be used to construct 10 girls secondary schools out of the 26 secondary schools planned to accommodate girls taking Science subjects at both ordinary and advanced levels.
According to her, the government will also build 300 secondary schools at a total cost of Sh650 million to Sh700 million each in wards lacking such facilities. This is under the Secondary Education Quality Improvement Project (SEQUIP).
"The government will also spend Sh23 billion to complete construction of 1,840 secondary school classroom sheds, and build 300 'two-in-one' teachers' houses at a cost of Sh50 million each," she said.
Ms Mwalimu said Sh312.05 billion has been set aside for the provision of free primary education; Sh50 billions for purchasing secondary school books, and Sh40.85 billion for finalizing the construction of 3,268 primary school classroom sheds.
Sh6.73 billion will be used to purchase 710,000 desks to address the shortage of 1,048,561 desks countrywide, while Sh26.07 billion will be spent on completing the construction of 1,043 laboratory rooms for science subjects in secondary schools.
Another Sh57.9 billion will go into building administration blocks for regional and district commissioners, as well as division executive officers. Another Sh83.75 billion will be used to construct administration blocks in 96 councils.
Sh7.65 billion will be used to build houses for directors and departmental heads in 51 councils.
"Sh14.80 billion of local funds is for purchasing 66 vehicles for regional and council leaders. Another Sh68.70 billion is for implementing 31 strategic projects in 26 councils," she said.
Sh67.66 billion is for providing 10 percent loans to women, youths and people with disabilities (PwDs), while Sh627 billion has been allocated to the Tanzania Rural and Urban Roads Agency (Tarura) for the construction and rehabilitation of roads.
According to her, a total of Sh272.50 billion will come from the roads fund, Sh127.50 billion from the consolidated fund and Sh12 billion from Tarura's own internal sources expecting to build 136.82 kilometres at the tarmac level, 500 kilometres at the gravel level and build 90 culverts and bridges.