Budget and Service Delivery Monitoring Exercises: A Synthesis Report

This Budget Champions Network (BCN) report is a synthesis of six Budget and Service Delivery Monitoring Exercises (BSDMEs) by the Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment (ACODE) and its partners between FY 2018/19 and FY 2020/21. The focus was mainly on three aspects: the display of information on grants; timeliness of the transfer of funds to districts and Sub-Counties; and assessing capabilities for service delivery in roads, health and agricultural extension services. The exercise covered 27 districts across Uganda namely: Agago, Amuru, Bududa, Buliisa, Gulu, Hoima, Jinja, Kabarole, Kamuli, Lira, Luweero, Mbale, Mbarara, Mpigi, Mukono, Nakapipirit, Nebbi, Ntungamo, Rukungiri, Soroti, Tororo, Amuria, Moyo, Moroto, Wakiso, Masindi and Kanungu. Data was collected using observation and semi-structured questionnaires. In nominal terms, the average total budget for the 26 districts declined from UGX 29 billion in 2017/18 to UGX 25 billion in 2019/20. In terms of spending, the average total spending for the 26 districts declined from UGX 27 billion in 2017/18 to UGX 23 billion in 2019/20. The decline in the budgets and spending can be attributed to factors such as the decline in local revenues, but most significantly the decline in Central Government transfers since all LGs largely depended on this source or revenue to finance their budgets. The reports indicated that although there were some improvements, late release of funds by MoFPED to LGs was still a big challenge. The failure to disburse funds in timely manner had major negative impact on service delivery to the citizens. In addition, the display of budget releases on district and sub-county notice boards was irregular and or totally missing in some LG and service centres. This made it difficult for the citizens to monitor service delivery in their communities.