Dar performs poorly in budget transparency, report shows

02May 2016
Correspondent
The Guardian
Dar performs poorly in budget transparency, report shows

OPEN Budget Survey conducted by International Budget Partnership (IBP) for 2015 shows that Tanzania isn’t doing well on budget transparency, public participation and oversight hence recommending improvement.

Minister of Finance, Dk Philip Mpango

IBP results for 2015 show that in public participation Tanzania scored 33 percent, meaning that Tanzania is not providing the public with the opportunity to engage in the budget process. On budget oversight Tanzania scored 39 percent, meaning that organs that are supposed to provide budget oversight, such as the Parliament, civil society organisations (CSOs), media and citizens are weak.

According to IBP, Tanzania should prioritise actions to improve budget transparency, produce mid-year review and year-end report, increase the comprehensiveness of the executive budget proposal and increase the comprehensiveness of the enacted budget.

Value Our Health Campaign run by African Health Budget Network (AHBN) and IBP has advised Tanzania to prioritise actions aimed at improving budget participation, establish accessible mechanism for capturing public perspectives and provide detailed feedback on how public inputs have been captured and taken into account, hold legislative hearing on budget of specific ministries, departments, and agencies at which testimony from the public is heard and establish formal mechanism for the public to participate in audit investigations.

The report notes that Tanzania needs to establish a specialised budget research office for the legislature, ensure the executive receives prior approval from the legislature before implementing a supplemental budget and require a legislative or judicial approval to remove the head of the supreme audit institution.

At global level, 2016 Aid Transparency Report released by a global campaign for aid transparency, Publish What You Fund, shows that only 25 percent of global aid meets transparency standards promised by donors in 2011.

Donors in 2011 promised to open up their books publishing details of their development projects to a common open standard, the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI).

According the report unveiled recently by ‘Publish What You Fund’ at the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund (IMF) Annual Spring Meeting, in Washington DC, despite progress over the last five years, analysis of 46 aid donors found that most have failed to uphold this commitment, something which is likely to limit the impact of aid as information is critical to effective policy planning, engagement and oversight.

“The data revolution isn’t reaching the world’s poorest countries. The 2016 Aid Transparency Index show that only 10 out of 46 of the world’s largest and most influential donors provided enough information to enable recipient government to plan, or for citizens to hold their government to account,” said Publish What You Fund Chief Executive Officer Rupert Simons at a Roundtable Meeting between World Bank Group Executive Directors and CSOs.

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