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A government initiative has been officially introduced with the aim of expediting the budgeting processes which will lead to a reduction in delays to national development goals.

The Ministry of Finance through its Expenditure Division earlier this month issued to government ministries and department a circular stating that it now has the authority to approve their own recurrent budgets of not more than $250,000 as a means to "give the departments more flexibility and accountability", whilst promoting discipline in the management of government finances.


In a Sunday Bulletin interview with the Acting Director of Budget, Pg Hajah Zety Sufina Pg Dato Paduka Haji Sani on the sidelines of a roadshow, she explained that the new budgeting system is to not only hope for better budgeting management and reducing the bottle-neck effect but to also "make transactions smoother", particularly in moving finances from one account to another, which prior to the changes, required approval of the Ministry of Finance.

"When all 12 ministries forward their applications to us they would need to queue as we process their applications," which congested the progress for change.

"Ministries, sometimes are not able to pay hired companies, if they are still waiting for budget approval and we hope that this process will make that faster to ensure that we will not have a significant number of outstanding payments," in addition to reducing the number of complaints received because of this.

"This is just to start off," she said, referring to the under $250,000 amount.

"We are starting with just a relatively small value and if the ministries are able to cope, then we might give them a bigger allowance.

"I just hope that ministries will (utilise the changes) and learn to plan better so that they can carry out their functions more efficiently."

The said changes are made to cater to budgets required for operations to maintain respective departments and plans are in the works to introduce what will be known as 'Performance Budgeting', which measures ministry performance against their budgets. More information on this particular subject will be made available soon.

Yesterday's roadshow at the Ministry of Finance was attended by approximately 300 government servants responsible for financial management dealings.

- Courtesy by Borneo Bulletin, Sunday 20 May 2012