By Yusef Taylor, @FlexDan_YT
The Gambia’s National Assembly approved the Revised 2022 Budget Appropriation cutting down the Approved 2022 Budget Appropriation by over D923 million on 28th July 2022. At the same time, the Revised 2022 Budget Appropriation will see a 30% increase in salaries across the board barring five Independent Institutions such as the National Assembly, the Judiciary and the Independent Electoral Commission.
It can be recalled that the Approved 2022 Budget Appropriation totalled over D23 billion for some 29 Government Institutions. However, after Finance Minister Hon Seedy Keita tabled a Revised 2022 Budget Appropriation last week Thursday, the National Assembly approved a Revised 2022 Budget Appropriation increasing the number of Government Institutions to 31 and reducing the total sum to over D22.7 billion.
This represents a reduction of over D923 million with the biggest cut coming from Centralized Services where D673 million has been cut from over D2 billion approved to be spent in 2022. In total up to 19 different government institutions and Ministries have been cut a total of D1.61 billion from the 2022 Approved Budget.
Meanwhile, a total of 8 government institutions have been increased by D688 million. These include two newly formed government institutions and six existing ones. The highest increase for existing institutions goes to the Ministry of Interior which saw an additional D137 million followed by the Ministry of Health which received an additional D124 million.
It can be seen that over D46 million has been cut out from the Ministry of Information, Communication and Infrastructure which has now been split into two Ministries with D52.8 million going to the newly formed Ministry of Communication and Digital Economy while the Ministry of Information has been allocated just over D24.3 million.
The second newly created Ministry of Public Service, Administrative Reforms and Policy Coordination has been allocated over D134.6 million to bring about Civil Service Reforms and Coordinate Government Policy. In total over D187 million has been added to the two newly formed Government Ministries.
However, the total Appropriation approved for five government Institutions approved back in 2021 has not been amended and these include the National Assembly, the Judiciary, the Independent Electoral Commission, the National Audit Office and Pensions and Gratuities.
Government Expenditure End of April 2022
The most recent breakdown of Government Expenditure available on the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs website is from the start of January to the end of April 2022 and indicates that 24.3% of the total Approved 2022 Budget Appropriation has been spent. If each month is weighted equally the Government should have spent around 33.3% of the budget. This indicates that the government is underspending by approximately 9%, however, government expenditure usually increases towards the end of the year.
According to the most recent expenditure briefing, the Office of the President has spent over 48.4% of its budget. This means that the Office of the President has spent almost half of its Approved 2022 Budget Allocation. This highlights the government’s decision to approve an additional D86.5 million to the Office of the President increasing its 2022 Budget Allocation from D677.6 million to D764 million.
The Independent Electoral Commission is said to have spent over 86.3% of its 2022 Budget Allocation which highlights that their most expensive activity of the year in the April 2022 National Assembly Elections has been conducted. It must be reiterated that the Independent Electoral Commission has not been allocated any additional funds in the Revised Budget.
One high spending Ministry which has absorbed over 50% of its budget by the end of April 2022 is the Ministry of Transport, Works and Infrastructure which spent over D1.1 billion (68.8%) out of its D2.19 Billion approved in late 2021. In response to this, Parliament has approved an additional D21.7 million for the Ministry of Transport, Works and Infrastructure to spend in 2022.
Below is the Approved 2022 Budget Appropriation, the Revised 2022 Budget Appropriation and the Difference, together with a comment to indicate an increase or a decrease.