Buliisa leaders tipped on revenue growth

Buliisa: Leaders in Buliisa District have been challenged to sssidentify more revenue sources in order to enhance their local revenue collection.

The call was made recently by the commissioner of the Local Government Finance Commission, Ms. Christine Kataike Abong, while at Buliisa district headquarters.

Kataike explained that their mission for the outreach is to collect evidence-based information about gaps and challenges that hinder quality service delivery in districts, build capacity, equip leaders with more strategies, and enable enhancement in local revenue collection.

She said the commission is conducting the same exercise in the twelve districts of Uganda and in the Albertine region, including Buliisa, Kikuube, and Kakumiro districts, respectively.

Kataike asked Buliisa district leaders to avoid only depending on grants from the central government but should think beyond identifying other sources of revenue.

She noted that after acquiring the evidence needed from districts, they will compile constitutional advice for the president through the Minister of Local Government for a possible response.

James Ogwang also enlightened Buliisa leaders that they can as well start collecting revenue from stone quarrying, sand mining, and marram mining exercises, plus workers on those sites, to increase their local revenue as well.

He encouraged leaders to read and understand the Mineral and Mining Act 2022 to enable them to design a development plan to start collecting revenue from the oil and gas industry.

Ogwang said hotels operating in oil camps and Murchison Falls National Park should also be paying taxes to enable them to collect more local revenue.

The chief administrative officer, Ismael Onzu, however, decried of districts that produce municipalities, cities, and subcounties that produce town councils how they suffocate, because mostly they are left with no offices and even more revenue sources remain in towns.

Mr. Fred Lukumu, the Buliisa district chairperson, however, described Buliisa as a hub for the economic development of Uganda, adding that most people are unemployed in the district due to interventions made on fishing activities in the area by the government.

However, the district engineer, Moris Wakame, said 1 billion shillings from the Ministry of Works and Transport for rehabilitation and maintenance is less money compared to the roads’ conditions.

Wekame noted that several roads have bridges that have broken down and separated roads, which require more strong bridges and are too expensive to construct.

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