Urgent Funding Appeal for 2026 Elections

The Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee has urged the government to allocate Shs756.988 billion to the Electoral Commission (EC) to kickstart preparations for the 2026 general elections. This plea comes as a response to the delayed disbursement of funds to implement the electoral roadmap, which, according to the committee’s chairperson, Hon. Robina Rwakoojo, has fallen significantly behind schedule.

Rwakoojo emphasized that the majority of planned activities in the roadmap have fixed timelines and are sequential, making any delays detrimental. “We propose allocating an additional Shs756.9888 billion to facilitate the commission in executing activities with statutory timelines before the general elections,” she remarked.

The committee’s report, presented on Friday, 12 April 2024, was discussed and approved during the plenary session chaired by Speaker Anita Among. The report focuses on the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs’ policy statement and budget estimates for the Financial Year 2024/2025.

MPs in the report urged the government to fulfill its commitment to allocate Shs11.16 billion, approved in 2017, to enhance the commission’s remuneration, a promise that remains unfulfilled.

Additionally, Rwakoojo proposed a budget allocation of Shs3.50 billion to cover the allowances of part-time teachers at the Law Development Centre (LDC), highlighting the adverse effects of inadequate funding on LDC’s operations.

In response to the backlog of cases, the committee approved a budget of Shs11.407 billion to recruit more state attorneys, acknowledging the staffing shortage’s impact on government representation in legal matters.

Kalungu West County MP, Hon. Joseph Ssewungu, emphasized the urgency of implementing the committee’s recommendations. “The absence of state attorneys in lower courts has led to prolonged detention of individuals at police stations, underscoring the necessity for more resident state attorneys,” he urged.